After the 1994 Rwandan genocide many children were displaced and orphaned, JAM’s Fred Nkunda Life Centre (FNLC) was started shortly after the genocide as a result of this need. The orphanage was originally established together with the late Ugandan national Fred Nkunda who had a vision of empowering children orphaned and displaced as a result of the genocide, thus the orphanage was named after him.
Whilst JAM’s presence in Rwanda was almost immediate, it took 4 years to establish the official orphanage in Rwanda. The partnership with Life Outreach International made the building of the orphanage possible, and in 1998 it was officially opened to house orphans of the Rwandan genocide.
Education always played an integral role in the daily lives of the children at FNLC. In line with JAM’s vision of Helping Africa Help Itself, education was identified as the key component in empowering the children with the tools and knowledge to survive and flourish once they were reintegrated into society.
Over the years, 100s of independent young adults have been reunited with their families and reintegrated into their communities through the intervention of the FNLC and the Young Adults Integration Programme.
JAM Rwanda Skills Training Centre Today
Over the past few years, the FNLC has transitioned from providing much-needed care for orphans to the provision of vocational skills training for young adults. Today the Rwanda Skills Training Centre houses only around 20 orphans, but approximately 649 students training in hairdressing, welding, carpentry and masonry.
JAM Rwanda also successfully runs an agricultural programme that produces food to complement the diet for students at the training school.