August 2017 Newsletter

August is awesome for about 2 weeks with so many of the kids are home and then my kids all go back to school.

I promised a photo of the secondary school kids. You will find it's a much smaller group than July’s picture. Why? Five of the kids in the last photo have started University or will start in September. We now have 18 kids who have finished Secondary school and are moving on to Universities, technical school or employment.

Child of the month: Rebekah Landis

Rebekah Landis 5 years old

Our little girl came with no name. It was my privilege to pick a name for her. Rebekah in the bible is one of my favorite woman with a strong character (forceful woman). I chose that name for this little girl. She is living up to her name.

When Rebekah came to Urukundo, Pastor Sharon Landis was volunteering with us. We needed a last name for her and Pastor Sharon suggested she have her last name and so Rebekah Landis became a part of Urukundo family.

Becca for short arrived at Urukundo on October 24, 2009. Her date of birth was figured as about June 29.  She was brought to Urukundo by Exec. Sec. of the Gitarama Cell, Misago Matias.  

The social worker who also came with her told us,” this baby girl was left in the house of a poor family who already had many children and could not support another child.  "Can she live with you?” Saying no to a baby is not possible. At 4 months, she was a tiny girl with a will of her own.

Rebekah has a personality like no other.  In early childhood, she tried getting her own way by crying every time things did not go the way she wanted. It took her some time to learn that crying did not get her what she wanted but gave her time on her bed away from the other children.

She is the most loving and friendly child in our home.  She is a forceful little girl.  

She is now 8 years old in Primary 2 and doing well.  She could edit a newspaper. Her abilities run in that direction.  

Rebekah has leadership abilities and looks out for the other younger children. She is alert to happenings in the village and is first alert if there is a problem brewing. Love that little girl.

Rebekah today


She will be an interesting one to track as she matures. Expect great things from her.


Returned to Arizona University USA

Tresor is so special at Urukundo. His visit after being gone two years was much too short.  His return to the USA was sad for us but we know he will return to make a difference in his home land in two years.

Jacob and Jason needed a photo with him and Banita would not be left out. Makes a great picture.


Play time with the kids for Tresor


Progress of a sort

A first for Urukundo Kids.  Having a drivers license is indeed an accomplishment.  Both Tresor with his USA license and Divine with her’s from Rwanda are now drivers. To make it a special event Tresor rented a car and for the first time my University three came home driving a car.  Shock for Mama.

Tresor, Lilliane, Divine

 Aspiring Soccer (foote ball) player, Jason.

A very happy reunion

A delightful surprise when my phone rang and it was Pastor Alexi saying he would visit me the next day with a friend.  How great when the friend was Bill Graf.

Pastor Alexi and I have a very long history in Rwanda and his family are part of the Urukundo family. Pastor Alexi serves a United Methodist church in Kigali City.  Bill Graf first came to Urukundo when we were only a home for girls in 2007. He was a witness when we bought our first piece of land.  Bill is an attorney from Colorado, USA. He has been a faithful supporter for Urukundo and our family.

Inspiring Woman

Charlotte Sauer & Lena Claro both Medical students in their 6 year of medicine came to spend the day at Urukundo Village.

These soon to be doctors were an inspiration to our girls.  Yes, girls can be doctors. Set your goals and do your best in school. It can happen.

Another Pleasant surprise

This has been the month for pleasant surprises. My dear friend since 2007, Dr. Otto Fischer from Austria arrived Sunday, August 13 to worship with the children, share lunch with us, and spend several hours just talking with me.  Some of you will remember Dr Otto as the Veterinarian.  

So everyone seems to be taller than me.  

Dr. Otto Fischer brought with him 3 of his “Verein Future for Kids” students and a driver/friend with him.

Check his web site:

This is a great photo but white hair does not show well in the sun light from the lunch room window.



Our visitors are few but very special.

Christoph Rass & Carolin Horacek from Germany visited the Urukundo Learning Center in August. Short visit but very nice. They brought soccer balls for the kids. Great gift.  Their interest in Rwanda is schools. I do hope we made a good impression.

Mama & Baby Outreach

Baby #10 for August

Baby #15  This little preemie almost didn’t make it. Born at 7 months.


Playground gets a facelift

Our playground was funded by “Raised Hands For Africa” out of North Carolina, USA several years ago. We are grateful. It is used by the school, our kids and the Day Care kids. What a blessing.

Included in the facelift is lines and back boards on Basketball Court.

Ready for another umpteen years. 

Construction of Wall

It is very necessary to establish a retaining wall at lower level of Learning Center.

In order to protect the toilets, WOF (World Orphans Fund) helped us build this essential wall. Without the wall a heavy rainstorm could bring the building down the mountain. Our mountain is beautiful but soft ground requires much care.

Sand, stone, cement, and hard labor gets the job done. Great crew.

Secondary Kids 2017

As promised in last months newsletter.  In photo from left to right; Bosco, Belise, Esperance, Abias, Giselle, and Olivier.  They are great!

Bosco and Abais & Oliver are in senior 5 graduate in 2018

Giselle & Fabrice are in senior 6 and graduate this year 2017

Esperance & Belise finish Jr. High this year.

Fabrice was not present for the group photo but is also a High school student.  He did make it home on a short visit.

In closing, I leave you with this thought:

The vulnerable children of Rwanda and the world.

Opportunity is what they need. Your love. Their lives, Our world, You can make a difference.

Your most appreciated gift can be sent to the address below or use the Donate button at the upper right- hand corner of the screen:

Hope Made Real
PO Box 3222
Williamsport, PA 17701

Much love,

Mama Arlene
Urukundo Foundation/Hope Made Real