Rwanda Aid works in the remote south west region of Rwanda, in the districts of Rusizi and Nyamasheke, situated between the Nyungwe Forest and Lake Kivu. Here the people are not only struggling from the aftermath of the genocide in 1994, but they also face desperate poverty.
Rwanda Aid aims to support the vulnerable and disadvantaged, especially children, helping them to develop the skills and knowledge to build a better future for themselves, their families and their community
Rwanda Aid creates innovative, pilot projects that act as models and catalysts for further development. We offer well directed and effective help through a team of Rwandan Managers with volunteer UK Managers in support.
We are a lean and efficient organisation with low UK administrative costs. Rwanda Aid provides direct feedback to its donors. We are keen to promote initiative, hard work, and a sense of community. We also work closely with the Rwandan Government, both at local and national levels.
The charity is run by a Board of Trustees chosen for their different areas of expertise and for their commitment to Rwanda. The Trustees have visited Rwanda on at least one occasion.
Our vision is to enable and empower so that eventually we will no longer be needed.
Rwanda Aid was founded in 2008. In our relatively short life we have already helped thousands of the most vulnerable people in the following ways:
- 38 classrooms have been built with extensive teacher training offered in support of raising the schooling standards
- Over 50 children have been sponsored through secondary school
- 18 teachers have been trained as teacher mentors who support a further 84 teachers across 26 schools in effective teaching and learning methods
- A vocational training centre has been built on Nkombo Island which trains approximately 100 students each year
- 825 people have been trained in organic farming and livestock care
- 14 tree nurseries have been supported giving out approximately 300 000 young trees each year
- A village for 60 disabled children has been created and supported
- Over 50 families have been rehoused
- A respite centre for street children has been created. 172 children have been supported so far.
- An effective and professional Rwandan management team has been built
Rwanda Aid shares the Rwandan Government’s 2020 vision. By that year we plan for the Rwandan management team to be autonomous and independent, working closely with the Government and the community to provide care for the vulnerable and disadvantaged, and education, training and opportunity for the young.
Rwanda Aid was founded by David Chaplin in 2008.
David was the Headmaster of a prep school in East Sussex for many years. Early in his career there a couple placed their son in the school as a boarding pupil because they were working in Rwanda. David and his wife, Sally, decided that this was a wonderful opportunity to involve the pupils in the school in this work in Rwanda, so they encouraged the children to undertake some modest fund-raising exercises.
The feedback from Rwanda in the form of letters, photographs and videos was excellent, so the pupils not only gained an insight into how their funds were helping, but also into life in a developing country, so different from their own lives.
In 2003, David retired and was offered the opportunity to visit Rwanda and help with some of the projects which his school had supported. Initially he went for six months, but he found the work so challenging and inspiring that he has been involved ever since. His experience is that once the poverty and suffering cease to be merely a statistic, but become a reality fleshed out in individuals whom you come to know and care about, then the desire to help becomes much more compelling.