In January 2017, Rising Above the Storms launched our first Learning Center in Kigali, Rwanda. In partnership with a local nonprofit, Amahoro (Peace) Builders, our Learning Center currently supports about over 50 children ranging from 10-18 years old and offers an after-school program that serves as a safe haven for at-risk youth. The Center is designed to complement existing educational systems and promote the value of education among participants and their families.
At the Center, kids can seek education support from our tutors, listen to guest speakers, and play games or football.
Through our computer lab, we boost our kids’ confidence and curiosity by teaching them essential computer skills. Currently, there are a total of nine laptops at the Center. This lab aims to keep our kids motivated to stay in the program, prevent them from going back to the streets, and prepare them for a future career in technology.
Prior to re-enrolling in school, the kids go through a month of counseling to help them emotionally prepare. Once enrolled or return to school, the kids continue to attend after-school counseling sessions on weekends. Our team works with the children and their families to assess individual needs for long-term planning to ensure continued emotional support.
In order to re-enroll in school, Rising Above the Storms covers their school fees and provides uniforms and school materials at the Learning Center in Rwanda.
The kids can also come to the Center to shower, eat, and find safe housing. Our kids are aware that if they are hungry, they are encouraged to come to the Center to be fed anytime, rather than returning to the streets. Warm meals are critical part of our programs.