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Peace Besime and Nsanze Sepiria: A couple’s story of resilience in Kamwenge, Uganda

We share a couple’s story of resilience. Peace Besime and Nsanze Sepiria were struggling after years of failed farming ventures, they could barely pay for their basic needs (medical expenses, school dues for their five children, and the construction of a decent shelter). Thankfully, they were introduced to the Graduating to Resilience Activity funded by USAID (led by AVSI Foundation, in partnership with American Institute for Research and Trickle Up). Peace and Nsanze were empowered with practical tools: goal setting, business coaching, good agronomic practices, and even more; finally, their voyage to self-reliance began!

Witnessing courage, strength and determination in Iraq

The Islamic State (ISIS) caused havoc when they seized 40% of Iraq. They invaded the country in 2014 and ruthlessly destroyed basic infrastructures and businesses. The word ‘sad’ doesn’t really describe what I witnessed; it was heart wrenching! It has already been 4 years since ISIS was defeated, yet as you drive by the streets of Qaraqosh, there are still reminders of the destruction ISIS caused.

Mukantibenda Agnes, keeping her community united

Agnes Mukantibenda, 50 years old, is married and has five children and three grandchildren. AVSI met her in 2013 when we launched an Early Education Center in her village, Munyinya, in Gicumbi, a district in Northern Rwanda. Since the beginning, she has been one of the most active parents involved in the activities of the center. In 2015, she became the chairperson of the committee “Tumurengere”. One of Agnes’ children was part of the AVSI distance support program. She was so glad that her son could study that she decided to volunteer to help other children receive the same opportunity. Her job is to regularly visit 12 vulnerable families in two villages of Kabeza and Rwamushumba. During her visits, she learns and checks on how children and parents are doing, and if they have any specific needs. The COVID-19 pandemic has not stopped her commitment.