[ OPINION ] : Tube Heza Amazi Hafi Project gives hope to citizens of the Karongi district.
Like the poor widow of the Gospel who offers two small copper coins (Mk 12:41), Caritas Rwanda, continues to advocate for, and support the needy through its unfailing contribution to alleviating hardships that face the most vulnerable people across all its networks. This is the case for the Karongi district where Tube Aheza, Amazi Hafi Project, co-financed by the Slovenian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Caritas Slovenia is being implemented by Caritas Rwanda.
Launched in 2019, Tube Aheza, Amazi Hafi Project is Caritas Rwanda’s contribution to arise to the challenges brought by COVID-19, especially in the Karongi District. This project has 1450 beneficiaries and is being directly implemented by Caritas Nyundo/ Kibuye under the supervision and coordination of Caritas Rwanda. The project contributes toward building and sustaining adequate water infrastructure and sustainable management capacity for the vulnerable population of the Gashari, Mutuntu, Rugabano, and Rwankuba sectors. Two water supply systems are under rehabilitation and will help local communities to access clean water. Equally, 20 handwashing stations and 4 water kiosks were built in all the project’s coverage areas.
Notwithstanding the construction and rehabilitation of water supply systems, Caritas Rwanda was compelled to help vulnerable youths and adults from the four sectors to make ends meet. The project has established community-based saving and lending groups for the beneficiaries and through these groups, the beneficiaries not only save but also ask for small loans to start-up small businesses or income-generating activities after being trained on business planning. With small-scale businesses ranging from the sale of services like Irembo, animal rearing, and food and drink joints, the beneficiaries access and afford socio-economic services such as community-based health insurance, school fees, and any other related basic needs.
Throughout its different projects, Caritas Rwanda sympathizes with those who do not have sufficient food to meet their dietary needs for a productive and healthy life, among other various missions. Small-scale farmers who had been relying on subsistence farming and were living from hand to mouth were trained by the project on Good Agricultural Practices (GAP) towards sustainable food security. Through Farmer Field Learning School (FFLS) the project beneficiaries were trained on good farming practices and were offered small animals for manure production, improved seeds, and fruit trees. Apart from the manure, small animals’ rearing business is as well an added source of income.
Such a project is a reminder that there is nothing such as a small contribution in accompanying and giving hope to many. Caritas Rwanda’s accompaniment is kindled by solidarity and engagement, especially for the most vulnerable of our society. Accompanying the poor does not mean taking away their struggles or hardships, but helping them to gain a foothold on the ladder climbing toward self-reliance. Engagement on the other hand is to inspire the beneficiaries to act without taking away agency from them. Tube Aheza, Amazi Hafi beneficiaries now have a glimpse of the sky, and who knows, one day they may fly!
UWIRAGIYE Emmanuel, MEAL Officer
Tube Aheza, Amazi Hafi Project