“If we had five charities working like Send a Cow, poverty would be history in Rwanda.”
Annociatta Mugoro, Rwandan mother
The 1994 genocide left Rwanda deeply scarred. Yet today, Rwandans are taking great strides to overcome the rifts and re-build their country.
In Send a Cow projects, many fractured communities are working together to find solutions to the shared problems of poverty. And by passing on the benefits of our work to their neighbours, they strengthen community ties further.
The problems they face are huge. Most families only have tiny plots of land, with degraded soils. And many have taken in orphaned children. HIV/Aids rates are high, and malnutrition is widespread.
The country also lost much of its livestock in the violence. So Send a Cow provides people in Rwanda with good quality cows, goats and smaller animals, while also training them in sustainable organic farming and environmental protection techniques. You can find out more about Send a Cow Rwanda by visiting their website.
“When I look at the goats, it makes me happy. They are beautiful. They have changed my life.”
The day Micheline Uwamahoro’s children tested negative for HIV was the day she finally allowed herself to start believing in a better future – a future she knew would revolve around her new found love for a pair of goats from Send a Cow.
“When I look at the goats it makes me happy. They are fantastic. They are beautiful. They have really encouraged me. They have changed my life.”
Micheline’s whole life has been affected by AIDS. She lost her husband to the disease and is HIV positive herself. Micheline is currently benefiting from anti-retroviral drugs – only effective when taken in conjunction with a healthy diet.
This became possible when Micheline received two dairy goats from Send a Cow – providing the family with much needed access to goats’ milk. Goats’ milk is incredibly beneficial for people living with HIV as it is highly nutritious and easily digestible for those with a weakened immune system.
Micheline also received training in organic agriculture, helping her introduce a wide range of fresh vegetables to the family’s diet. This was also possible because of the goats whose composted manure helped rejuvenate land the family had previously struggled to grow anything on. Furthermore, the sale of surplus crops meant Micheline could finally afford to send her children to school.
Now the goats have produced a couple of kids themselves and Micheline is keen they help others in her group who are also HIV positive. She will pass the female on to another member also trained by Send a Cow and sell the male kid.
Micheline believes her life has really changed since receiving the goats – and is now confident her children will reap the benefits of all her hard work looking after the goats and tending the family’s farm.
“Now my children are healthy, they are attending school and are never sick because they have a good diet and are HIV negative. Now they have dreams for the future.”