April 2019 Newsletter

Visit to the USA

What a wonderful welcome I have received!

First off, I was treated to a pedicure, manicure and a new hairdo. A gift from my daughter, Patricia, and her husband, Dale Bauman.

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What do you think? A bit different. Should it stay?

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I saw many special people in my first month and a half in the USA. Here are some of them in some kind of order by location.

Early in my travels, I was hosted by the Waverly Presbyterian Church mission team in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

Early in my travels, I was hosted by the Waverly Presbyterian Church mission team in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

What a wonderful evening I spent bringing them up to date on Urukundo and the Urukundo kids!

In State College, Pennsylvania, I saw Carol Falke, president of the Hope Made Real International Board.

Carol and Mama and the ice cream challenge. How awesome, and mine is vanilla, my favorite.

Carol and Mama and the ice cream challenge. How awesome, and mine is vanilla, my favorite.

The creamery at the Penn State University campus has the best ice cream ever. What a treat after Carol and her husband Steve gave me a personal tour of the campus! My first time ever.

More friends for Urukundo kids were at an open house at Carol’s home.

Joan Zimmer and Janet Madore in State College

Joan Zimmer and Janet Madore in State College

Jerry Brown of South Williamsport, Pennsylvania

Jerry Brown of South Williamsport, Pennsylvania

My son Jerry. He was such a reliable source of transport and lodging during my time in the Williamsport area. Jerry also serves Urukundo as the chair of Hope Made Real International Board.

Jeanne Willis of Hughesville, Pennsylvania

Jeanne Willis of Hughesville, Pennsylvania

My children in Rwanda remember Jeanne Willis. Jeanne has been a volunteer at Urukundo Village and is loved by the children.

Sherry Sechrist of Quiggleville, Pennsylvania

Sherry Sechrist of Quiggleville, Pennsylvania

My youngest sister. It was so good to touch base and spend a little time with her.

Darrel Bietz of West Chester, Pennsylvania

Darrel Bietz of West Chester, Pennsylvania

My nephew, Darrel Bietz. It was a pleasant surprise to see and spend a short time with him.

More of my family, this time in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.

Great-granddaughter Haleigh Moore, daughter Barbara Downs and great-grandson Nate Moore.

Great-granddaughter Haleigh Moore, daughter Barbara Downs and great-grandson Nate Moore.

I then traveled to the Philadelphia area where I was hosted and toasted by Diane Mastrull, reporter for the Philadelphia Inquirer and a good friend to Urukundo.

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This is Pierce Keating. He has promised to visit Urukundo in the future. Holding you to that promise, my friend.

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Katie Keating, who is Pierce’s wife, is the mom in this great family. Really Katie is a powerhouse full of love and compassion. Katie and her daughter Katrina have been volunteers at Urukundo.

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What an awesome couple and lovely family!

Report on me

I am well and looking forward to more visits and fundraising events before I arrive home June 1. Yes, I am homesick. Miss my kids.

Urukundo is always in my heart. My goal is to complete four more classrooms for the Primary Learning Center and four classrooms for the Sewing Center. Each room will cost about US$25,000.

The Sewing Center is now an accredited technical school and part of the Urukundo Learning Center. More space is required for further expansion. Turning deserving students away because of a lack of space is not acceptable at Urukundo/Hope Made Real.

My next stop is Arizona and Tresor’s graduation from Arizona State University. Tresor has been part of the Urukundo family since he was 12 years old. His major is software engineering, and he graduates with honors from Barrett, The Honors College, at the university.

Update and more news in the May newsletter.

Mama

Graduates on the move

Our recent high school graduates prepare for life away from Urukundo Village. University is now in their game plan. It takes a truck.

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Bosco, Olivier and Abais. Congratulations, gentlemen. Well done.

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Bosco and Abais will attend the Adventist University of Central Africa, Kigali campus.

Olivier will attend University of Kigali.

With the addition of these three, we now have quite a few in higher education:

• 22 students are at the university level or beyond.

• 1 is working on her master’s degree in Texas, USA.

• 1 finished college in Seattle, Washington, USA, in 2018. He returned to Rwanda and teaches phys ed at Urukundo Learning Center.

• 1 graduates from Arizona State University, USA, in May 2019.

• 4 have finished university or trade school and are gainfully employed.

• 3 will graduate in fall 2019.

• 5 will graduate in 2020.

• 2 will finish in 2021.

• 3 will graduate in 2023.

• 2 will graduate in 2024.

Our first generation of Urukundo kids are now young men and women. They are well on their way to a brighter future, thanks to you who have cared and shared. I thank you.