Uwamahoro, born in 1987

I was born in 1987, but not here in Gisenyi. I don't know where I was born because it was at the time all the trouble started. I didn't know much about my family because when the war started I was very young. But what I do remember is that I was happy with my family. When the time came to leave my home, I didn't go with my parents. My brother Gadi and I fled with our neighbors. On the road we even lost our neighbors, so we continued along with strangers. After one day alone, we met a nice woman who took us with her two children, and we continued with her until we reached the Congo. In the Congo the woman took us to an orphanage of Catholic sisters. Later we were transferred to another orphanage in Ruhengeri and we spent one year there. They then transferred us in this orphanage, Imbabazi, in 1996. The orphanage was in Mutura, and that is where I started my primary school. When I was in the 3rd grade, the war started again and we came here to Gisenyi Town. Even when we reached Gisenyi, we've moved to many houses. The life in the orphanage is okay. When it is time to be happy, we are happy, and if it is time to be sad, we are sad. I cannot finish this without telling you our worries. Sometimes we think about what could become of us if the orphanage closed or stopped working, because we've heard of other orphanages, which did so. I would like to thank all who support our orphanage and the ones who founded it, especially our lovely "God Mother" Ms. Rosamond Carr.

In 2006, Uwamahoro finishes her 4th year of secondary school. She is always very quiet and loves listening to music and reading books.

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Photo by Ingabire