Artisans from Rwanda
As markets open up, the women of Igira Impuhwe [i-GI-ru im-HU-we] in Rwanda earn needed income from the sales of their eco-friendly, handwoven grass baskets. The artisan group lifts women, like Mukangenzi Laurance, out of desperate poverty. She now rents a home, has health insurance for her family, bought clothes for the children, and rents a garden to grow food. Each woman in the group is also presented with the life-changing offer of eternal life; Mukangenzi thanks God for changing her live. Igira Impuhwe means “God is compassionate” in Kinyarwanda.
More Than Sparrows
More than Sparrows artisans in Kigali, Rwanda, are growing in strength of spirit as well as new-found respect and dignity because they have worked together to leave their old lives behind. Discovering that they can learn new handcrafts which are valued by others has offered the artisans hope and the opportunity to prosper. In 2013, a benefactor shared a reading from Matthew 10:31 with the artisans: "Fear not, therefore, you are of more value than many sparrows." These women were sex workers and street vendors, isolated women who were considered the lowest of the low, but this reading assured them that they had great value. Knowing their own worth brought them comfort and hope. Through their struggles they have discovered a sense of identity. The artisans support each other, look after each other, listen to each other and take pride in what they do. They have become resilient and because of that, they now stand up and say, "We are More than Sparrows."