Embrace Rwanda was birthed when a number of members from the Lower Mainland Anglican Coalition in Canada (ACiC) made their first visit to Rwanda in 2006. The ACiC is a group of Anglican congregations and churches whose beliefs and ministry are established on the firm foundation of Holy Scripture. The ACiC is a missionary outreach of the Anglican Province of Rwanda.
That first visit prompted many team members to focus on the Kigeme Diocese, in the Southern Province of Rwanda, and to identify projects that would enable Canadians and Rwandans to work together to serve the local communities in rural Africa.
Cultivating the capacity of the local people in rural Rwanda is the overall goal of Embrace Rwanda. This is achieved by working alongside the local people and assisting them by providing training, start up funds for projects that will generate revenue and encouragement for the work that they do in their own communities.
The first visit to the Kigeme Hospital brought home the stark realities of maternity care in rural Rwanda. Seeing such tiny and immature babies in what was known as the “Special care nursery” prompted the team to return to Canada with the hope of raising funds to improve the situation. The room was heated by a wood stove as there was no reliable source of electricity. Many of the women had given birth by Caesarean Sections as they had left it too late to come to the hospital and were often too tired to give birth naturally. The idea of assisting the mothers during pregnancy was birthed and the development of the Healthy Mums Project became a possibility.The purpose of the Healthy Mum’s Project is to keep mothers healthy during pregnancy so that they are able to give birth naturally, to a full term, healthy baby.