Our stories

Best Performing Girl - Grace Mutesi wa Mana

My name is Grace Umutesi wa Mana,

I completed my primary studies and was the first in my school. Imbuto Foundation publicly honored me through the Best Performing Girls campaign. That event changed my life forever. The community admired me and I felt proud.

Through this campaign, I saw a difference in the community towards educating girls. My teachers started giving more support to girls; girls saw me as role model and this motivated them to work hard. I passed the Ordinary level’s National exam by being the first girl in the district and Imbuto Foundation rewarded me for the second time. Those rewards motivated me and I kept working harder in order to be rewarded again at the end of my A level.

When I finished senior five in 2009 I lost my Father. It was the most difficult period of my life. My father was not only my Dad but also my friend, my adviser who was always there for me. When I realized that I would never see my father again, I was depressed though it was not easy, I did not give up. I told to myself that I have to get up, work hard to accomplish great things that will always make him proud of me even though he was not around. My mother was the one mostly affected by his death. I wanted to see the smile reappear on my mother’s face. I then decided to work hard. I studied well and completed my secondary school studies by being amongst the best students in Rwanda. I was rewarded by the First Lady for the third time. That day when I was rewarded I saw my mother’s smile reappearing.

Thereafter, I received the Presidential Scholarship to go to the U.S. and pursue my undergraduate’s studies. I hope my story can inspire other girls who are striving to reach the top and be “shining stars”. I have graduated at Oklahoma Christian University; in Pre-Med studies not only for me but for my country! Now everything that I do does not just have an impact on me but on the country. I am no longer working just for my personal achievement but also to contribute to the success of Rwanda.