A Letter from Rosine Mukabagorora
My name is Rosine Mukabagorora. I am 26 years old and a mentor of girl orphans of the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi, who are now living in the One Dollar Campaign Complex. I am privileged and honoured to share my story, on how I first got introduced to the work done by Imbuto Foundation.
In 2009, when I was in the sixth year of secondary school, I got a chance to represent my school TTC (Teachers Training College) Save, in the Youth Forum Series (YFS) organised by Imbuto Foundation. That year, the theme was: “Aspire to Inspire”. From the time I attended that YFS, I became more interested in activities done by Imbuto Foundation.
I always asked myself how I could become a part of this wonderful foundation. It wasn’t until Her Excellency Mrs. Jeannette Kagame initiated a mentorship journey for over 300 university girls and vulnerable survivors of the 1994 Genocide from the Association of Genocide Survivor Students (AERG), that I felt like I was finally part of the foundation.
During the event held in 2013, the First Lady called upon 100 mentors, including men and women. It was through this event, that I was paired with my mentor.
In my personal experience, this mentorship programme was a blessing. I desperately needed guidance, and lucky for me, Mrs. Yolande was the one.
I was in my third year of undergraduate education when I met her, my mentor; she never imposed any ideas on me, instead, she challenged me, and it pushed me to be better. Mrs. Yolande has always been the first one to applaud and encourage me through all my struggles.
Mrs. Yolande has been more than a mentor to me, over the years. Throughout our relationship, I have been able to open up and share parts of my life with her.
Being part of Imbuto Foundation’s mentorship programme has been great, because it has helped me to think big, dream higher, and become a responsible young woman.
The mentorship programme has also helped me improve my life and improve the lives of other girls. Today, I am a mentor of vulnerable girl orphans residing in the “One Dollar Campaign” complex. Being a mentor to these inspirational young ladies, is one of the best things that has happened in my life.
From what I remember, I lost my parents at the tender age of 4, during the 1994 Rwandan Genocide against the Tutsi. I spent most of my childhood in an orphanage, and had no hope for the future. Nobody could believe that one day I could become someone of worth, or be capable of mentoring and inspiring other orphans. But here I am today, mentoring over 80 girl orphans, like me, by providing them with career counselling, behaviour therapy and helping them deal with trauma in order to strive for a better future.
I am forever grateful for the chance to be involved with Imbuto Foundation’s mentorship me, and without the courage that my mentor gave me, it would have taken me much longer to get where I am today.
I feel privileged to have someone so knowledgeable and successful like Mrs. Yolande as my mentor, and I will remain forever thankful to her and the Imbuto Foundation family.
To end my story, I would like to personally thank Her Excellency, the First lady Mrs. Jeannette Kagame, for her beliefs and taking the initiative to empower young women.
I would like to also take this opportunity to wish Imbuto Foundation a happy 15th anniversary, and I hope that the next 15 shall also be successful.
* The mentorship programme was created as means of guiding and mentoring young girls in both their professional and personal development. The programme is offered under the Youth Empowerment and Mentorship Programme initiated by Imbuto Foundation in 2007.