The carpenters of Cooperative Abadasigana Gahanga (CAG) have a dream to change their paths and the paths of their children, and children’s children. And it is becoming a realization.
Ten of the sixteen men working with CAG were residents of HOPE Home in Rwanda. Before participating in Rwanda’s government run rehabilitation program on Iwawa (IRC), most of these young men were street kids; orphaned and homeless. And here they are today, with their own thriving cooperative business!
Being recognized by the government for their tremendous success, a visit from the Deputy Minister of MINALOC, the Deputy Director General of NRS and the new Mayor of Kicukiro District meant media attention! Much to the guys’ surprise, they made the news on TV! The media captured their desire to help Iwawa graduates avoid falling back into the trap of addiction and provide stability by inviting them to join their cooperative.
These young men have come a long way; now with wives and children of their own they have stability. They want the same for the new IRC graduates and they are willing to provide mentorship.
When asked about their success they attributed much of it to HOPE. Unanimously, they declared, the greatest thing they experienced at HOPE Home was “love.” It was a love that listened, encouraged, and built up. By providing a home with all the necessities of life, laced with tender loving care, they felt valued and worthy. They found supportive family in HOPE.
As they left HOPE Home, they set out to start a business, HOPE believed in them and provided seed money. When that first business faltered, the men did not give up, instead they buckled down, took on other jobs and saved until they could rent this current location and stock it with the tools of their trade. Today they boast of a huge success!
Closing our visit to their cooperative they shared, “We want to change history! We want to make everyone very proud!” Truly, we are busting with pride! Well done fellows!