You guys, my sister and wonderful nephew have been in Rwanda a few days. The updates I receive just fill my entirety. My heart is deeply moved, I can just feel how God is using them to pour out like a flooding water. They are steadily flowing His love, and His light, and His hope into the lives of these students- the impoverished students of The School for the Blind in Gatagara. Because my sister listened to an ache in the heart of her son, these students' lives are forever changed.
Here is a recent email I received from my sister,
"This morning we worked with Manzi to try and reach the three students who have finished high school and desire to go to college, Audrey, Samuel, and Sandrine. We arranged to have them all meet us in Nyabugogo which is where many buses, cars, and motorcycles are located to transport people from all over Rwanda in and out of Kigali. We got off the bus and met Samuel who had been standing in this dangerous area waiting for us all morning. I instantly loved Samuel and would describe him as kind, gentle, humble, and extremely smart. I got to talk with Sam a little more when Manzi took John to a bathroom. I talked with him about how he had recently discovered he would not be able to attend college this year due to the fact that there was an extra document he needed to fill out and submit by a certain date in order to get a loan, and it was too late as he had no money to pay school fees. I was heart broken to hear this because I know how smart he is and how hard he studies and values education. We then met Audrey and all five of us starting walking back to a bus, and tons of people were yelling hateful names and comments at us about being blind and worthless. We finally made it to the restaurant and got to also hear about Audrey's college predicament. She informed us she was not able to go to college because due to the fact that because she is Burundian, she was not able to get a school loan either. She studied very hard like Samuel, and finished one place ahead of him being number 3 in the class. She always knew that unless God did a miracle and provided funds for her school fees, she would not be able to go. She always studied hard and prayed and trusted God would provide a way at some point for her to go to college. This was all new news to me, John, and Manzi as we had planned to give them new laptops with earphones and JAWS software screen readers so that they would be able to be successful in school. Sandrine, who is not visually impaired but has severe scoliosis and is another college ready student met us at the restaurant and thankfully informed us that she had been accepted into college and approved for a loan. Two weeks before leaving for Rwanda, John and I shared our story with a home group from the Village Church and were blessed to have raised the money needed for four laptops for the four college ready students. However, upon reaching out to one of the students, Fortunee, we all agreed that we could help her go to a trade school since she felt like that was best for her. This and the fact that Manzi was able to negotiate lower prices for the laptops, allowed up to pay the initial fees for Samuel and Audrey which are due tomorrow, and have sponsors for them which will provide enough to cover half of their school fees. The other half we trust that God will provide in due time. Manzi, John, and I all agreed this was the best decision. I shared this news about paying the school fees with the students as well as giving the three
of them laptops and told them how much we love them and value them, but more importantly how much Jesus loves them and values them and has a vision for their lives. Then Manzi spoke to them in their mother tongue giving them firm advice about how to not take this for granted and how to make wise choices in college to show how they value this amazing opportunity. They were all so grateful and shocked. Sam and Audrey had already given up hope for being able to go to school this year, so they were especially surprised. Audrey said that she didn't even have words to say to express her gratefulness. Sam shared that when he found out a week ago that he couldn't go he and sister cried and cried and were so sad. He said he seriously could not believe it was happening and realized how it was all from God because John was not even that close to them when he was here. Samuel didn't understand how John would care so much about him getting to go to college and therefore knew it was God who put this on our hearts and made it happen just in the knick of time. I bet these academic students who finished second, third, and fourth in their class, will not sleep tonight over this excitement. Sam even said his family would be dancing with joy when he gets to tell them this news and that he couldn't wait for tomorrow so he could get registered. What a powerful day this has been."
Thank you guys so much for supporting Hope in His Vision. Thank you for the genuine prayers, thank you for the incredible contributions! Thank you for listening to that still-small-voice, without your efforts this would seem impossible to fulfill. Your help, big or small, has tremendously encouraged the lives of several of these students. We believe God will continue to flourish in the lives of each and every student in need at The School for the Blind in Gatagara, Rwanda.