Day 3: Advocating for the vulnerable

Posted: 16 August 2019

Student scenarios

Belinda and Kiera led another session with students from three Rwandan universities on advocating for children and vulnerable people. Building on the lessons from the faith and law session, the participants learned how to serve as lawyers with excellence – whoever their clients may be. During practical workshops, the students came up with their own questions to ask in mock scenarios that would help children and vulnerable adults give their best evidence. During the breaks, the students talked about their passions and interests in law, including a future women's rights advocate.

Whilst most of the students were totally engaged, Belinda's talents as a teacher came to the fore as she made the noisy students sit front and centre!

KEFA Academy

In the evening we visited the KEFA project, which works mainly with boys who are living on the streets of Kigali. The KEFA project uses football to reach these children; it runs football training sessions in the evenings after school to which boys and girls in the community come a few times a week. It also runs the KEFA academy, where around 16 boys live full time. These boys either do not have families, or are in conflict with their families and are not living with them. The staff at KEFA take care of the boys, as well as coaching the football sessions. Through their time at the academy the boys learn self-care, discipline, respect for others, time management, and also learn more about God and have opportunities to live out their faiths. The KEFA staff try where possible to facilitate reconciliations between the families and the boys, but where this is not possible the boys will stay at the academy all through their school years.

We were supposed to see the boys play football before joining them at the academy for the evening, but we got stuck in traffic waiting for the presidential motor cage to go past and a 25 minute journey took 1 hour and 40 minutes! So we went straight to the house to spend a couple of hours with the boys at the academy. We were given a tour of the boys rooms, and they showed us some of their drawings and told us about their daily routines. Then we all settled in the main room with a cup of 'porridge' (a thick, hot drink a bit like porridge but thinner and sweeter) while Keira shared a wonderful thought from the bible, and Belinda shared her testimony. We chatted to the boys for a while (one sang us a rap song he had written!) before heading home.

In the morning we got up extra early and managed to catch the boys' 8am training session, as we had missed the one the night before! They were very impressive, with a lot of discipline and team spirit and a clear love of the sport.