From Martha, international advocate for the Dufatanye Organization in Rwanda
I am so grateful to you who have been able to give to the Dufatanye Organization operating budget and to our Hunger Relief fund. We have been able to pay wages to our DO staff, in addition to raising $90,000 to feed thousands of people who might have starved in Rwanda during the quarantine. I am especially thankful for the ZMission Founder and Director, Mr. Clarke Kennedy, who has labored tirelessly to raise a large portion of the money. With God's help, we have fed over 10,000 people over the last months with over one hundred tons of maize flour and beans, in addition to providing a 12-inch bar of soap to every family that has come for aid. This is definitely like watching Jesus multiply the fishes and loaves. It's been miraculous! How I thank God and you too!
This past Friday was the end of the fourteenth week in our Hunger Relief Mission. It was the first week that we have had no money in our accounts to send. Our funds are completely depleted.
Godfrey Karema, the Founder and Director of the Dufatanye Organization, wrote a moving email. I’d like to share some parts with you here:
“We would like to thank you abundantly for your prayers and sacrifice in terms of time, resources and love for the huge work you have done to save lives here. You have been like good Samaritans, standing with us during this difficult time.
To be honest, life is not yet back to normal. COVID-19 cases are increasing and some places are back to total lockdown. One lady shared with me, 'I sell clothes at a shop in town. At the end of two days, I have not had a single person even ask the price of one of my clothes. I sit there all day and nothing. My customers were people attending weddings and going to church. Now I am finished.'
Before COVID-19 started, heavy rains had destroyed many farms and gardens throughout the country, including at the DO, where we lost over $6000 worth of fruits and vegetables. In some areas, mud slides and flooding also destroyed homes. Many have lost jobs due to the virus. Others have lost all means of shelter and support due to the flooding and mud slides on top of the virus.
We were feeding 700 families every week, but thankfully, approximately 400 of those families are able to survive mostly on their own now. But, due to the problems mentioned above, at least 300 families are still in a terribly vulnerable place with no food. I am writing this letter to kindly request another $5000 support each week for four more weeks to feed 300 families and sometimes more depending on the situation. I do not want our people to become dependent on your generosity. For now, this is a not an issue of dependency. It is an issue of survival”
Before concluding, I (Martha) want to acknowledge that many people in the US, including yourself, may have donor fatigue from all the needs bombarding you. I totally get this. Even as I ask for more financial resources to feed the people in Rwanda, there are organizations in the US that need food to distribute to hungry Americans. I merely ask you to pray and ask God to show you how to help, whether in the US or on behalf of hungry and desperate people in Rwanda.