Michelle is a seven-year-old Rwandan girl, the third in the family of four siblings. Her parents used to live a hard life and were not able to look after their children. They lacked essentials such as money to pay for food, school and medicines. Through its family strengthening programme, SOS Children's Villages Gikongoro helped Michelle's family to learn to look after themselves so that they can live independently in the long-term and offer a better life to their children.
Michelle at the computer lab.
Michelle was born in 2005 in Rwanda's southern province Nyamagabe. She was enrolled in the SOS Primary School with the support of FSP in 2011. Now in P 2, she is a very bright student, always top of the class, and a charming young girl.
Michelle at school (first on the right).
FSP Gikongoro started supporting Michelle's family in 2008. Her parents lived in extreme poverty: they were jobless, lived in an old run-down house without electricity and running water, and without enough food to feed their children. The first step by the FSP program, in collaboration with World Vision, was to build a new house for them. Later on, they gave the family a loan, which enabled them to start income generating activities. Michelle's mother started selling clothes and shoes at the market, making a daily profit. After a short period, SOS, in collaboration with the micro-finance Umurenge SACCO, helped them with a further loan, so that they could strengthen their activities. Michelle's father has now learnt how to drive and hopes to become a taxi driver: "Our family situation has greatly improved, "Michelle's mother says, "I'm selling clothes and shoes every day, and we now live in a good house, with electricity and running water."
Michelle at Gikongoro Children's Villages.
As for Michelle, she is very happy going to school every day: "My school is the best in town," she says, " I learn new things every day, I love my teacher, he is very friendly, and my favorite subjects are Maths and English."
When I finish school, I want to be a doctor so I can save lives and look after other children in need."