"Before sponsorship, we had a very bad life," says her mother, Virginie, 59. "We didn't have enough food; we had no manure for our crops to produce; we didn't have enough clothes."
Memories of the family's difficult past will probably never be far away. "Hunger," says Solange. "I remember hunger. It was very bad. I used to feel powerless, without any strength."
Acute food crises often predominate in Rwanda, where Solange and her family live, and where about 60 percent of the population lives on less than $1 per day.
In this small, mostly rural central African nation, 90 percent of families are subsistence farmers who till small, overused land plots with few tools or equipment that's outdated. Throw erratic rainfall into this dire equation, and it's clear why most households are unable to grow enough food to meet their needs.
World Vision began working in Solange's community, Nyaruguru, in 2000. One of the primary goals in our sponsorship projects is to come alongside families and communities to establish stable food sources — meeting dire, short-term needs, while focusing on long-term solutions. In Rwanda, we train farmers in agricultural skills to help them grow more nutritious food for their families.
Solange says she noticed things changed right away when World Vision began caring for the community. "They started providing food, beans, rice, maize flour, and also cooking oil. At each stage, World Vision continued to assist us..."
World Vision also provided the family with a cow. "Before Solange goes to school, she gets to drink milk," her mom adds.
Staff members also have had an impact upon the family. "…They are Christians," says Virginie. "They produce fruits among us; my faith has increased by knowing them. Before, I was living in loneliness, but when I met them, my faith increased. We took time to pray and have fellowship."
>> Thank God that Solange, her family, and her community are overcoming Rwanda's hunger crisis. Pray for the tens of millions of children and families who still are suffering because of the global food crisis, growing hungrier by the day.
>> Sponsor a child in Rwanda. Provide life-changing support that helps a child like Solange to reach his or her God-given potential.
>> Help provide food and care to desperately hungry children and families. Your gift will multiply six times in impact to provide life-saving assistance to those who need it most.
In The News
|:: Relief efforts intensify amid immense suffering across parched Horn of Africa|
|:: U.S. schools, students get helping hand in tough economy|
|:: VIDEO: Sponsor's bond with child makes world a little smaller|
|:: Six months after quake, tsunami, Japan battles long-term effects|