Ingabire, born 1988

I was born in 1988 in Gisenyi Province, the district of Nyamyumba. My family was in the medium ones, not rich, not poor. The war started when I was six and I fled to the Congo with my mother. The rest of my family - I mean my two brothers and my dad - didn't leave home. After some days in the Congo, we returned back home. We spent about two weeks there and then moved to Mutura just to visit my family's friends - it was my mom, my brothers and I. When we reached Mutura, we stayed. We didn't come back to Nyamyumba for reasons I don't know because I was too young.

There from Mutura, my mom used to go back home to visit my dad. After a long time, about 1 year, my mom passed away from disease. After our mother's death we were brought to the Imbabazi orphanage. In the orphanage our father came to visit us, but after a few months of that, he passed away too. We didn't know what he died of. I started my primary school in the orphanage, and when I was in the 2nd grade, even in Mutura, the security became bad, and we moved from there to Gisenyi Town. We changed houses about 3 times here in Gisenyi just to find a comfortable place for us. In the orphanage I've met many other children and we share the same experience of life. Now I'm in the 5th grade. My brother, John Bosco, is now in the 1st year of secondary school and another brother of mine, Kigingi, is working at Sembagare's house. We are all okay in this orphanage but sometimes I have bad thoughts which are hard to explain. I cannot finish without saying "thanks" to all who contribute to support us especially to those who had a good thought of creating this orphanage, and the first one is Mrs. Rosamond Carr.

Claudia Ingabire is studying at the Essa Secondary School for Girls in Ruhengeri. In 2006 she began her 3rd year there.

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Photo by Uwamahoro