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Building Brighter Futures with Early Childhood Education

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WRITTEN BY Cat Forsgren

The rural community of Cyagaju, Rwanda, lacked educational support for young children. Classrooms didn’t have basic amenities and were located far away from families. Young children could not easily attend school. Thanks to Child Sponsors and partnerships between local volunteers and FH Rwanda, 235 children’s lives were changed and their families’ hope was restored through the support of childhood education.

A Lack of Educational Support

The community of Cyagaju didn’t have access to quality education. Existing classrooms were ill-equipped. There wasn’t proper seating or materials. The distance to school for most was 5 to 9 kilometers (3 to 6 miles), so many families felt this was too far for young children to travel, so they stayed home.

“Our children’s schooling was not good at all,” Berthilda shared with FH. “I was scared for their life. I left them at home instead of sending them the long distance to a school with little resources.”

Many parents in the community shared the same thoughts. As children continued to fall behind in academics, the lack of educational support fed a cycle of underperformance and school dropouts.

Seeing the Need

A community volunteer, Clarisse, saw the lack of support in Cyagaju. He visited homes to teach parents about the importance of early childhood development. Despite his campaigning, Clarisse could not address the community’s most pressing issue: there was no physical infrastructure or materials to support young learners in Cyaguju.

Making a Change

Clarisse connected with local leaders. With his initiative, they reached out to FH Rwanda for help. All parties worked together to find a solution, and a plan was made to construct a facility to support the community. Made with young learners in mind, the first Early Childhood Education building in the area was built.

Clarisse teaches young children in the new school.
Clarisse teaches young children in the new school.

Today, this facility provides a supportive environment for learning. Clarisse, the community member who was passionate about solving this problem, is now teaching young learners at the new school.

The school boasts three classrooms, a kitchen and building to eat, desks to work, stimulating learning materials, and even a playground. It has become a place of community with its best feature being its close proximity to the families it serves. Even parents are learning new skills and benefiting from the school’s services on financial literacy and hygiene practices.

The new facility provides a safe and fun environment for kids to learn.
The new facility provides a safe and fun environment for kids to learn.

Supporting Young Minds 

This significant milestone for Cyagaju was fueled by Child Sponsorship. When children are sponsored through FH, a ripple effect happens in their community. Hundreds of children now have access to quality education at an early age and their parents have resources to build resilient homes and support their communities. This sets the stage for academic success and fosters bright futures for generations to come. Through the efforts of FH Rwanda, local leaders, and Child Sponsors, the positive impact of early childhood education will extend far beyond the classroom.


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Gift Policy:
You may send small, flat paper-based items that can fit into a standard #10 size envelope, have a value of less than $5 dollars and weigh less than 4 ounces. We ask that you send small, flat items of this size because shipping is expensive and even small gift items can cause issues clearing customs.
You can send postcards or photographs, however, we ask that you visit here for more details about culturally appropriate guidelines for photos and other images. Please write the child’s ID # on the back of each item that you enclose with your letter to ensure that it reaches him/her.
Best gifts to send your sponsored child:
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