First I would like to start by saying Congratulations to the 2016-2017 Shooting Touch Fellows, Jake Mendys and Chloe Rothman. While everyone tries to prepare you for what’s to come, remember, each person makes the experience their own and I am sure the two of you will as well. I look forward to meeting you at the gala in September as you prepare for what is to become one of the most amazing journeys of your life.
The President of Rwanda, Paul Kagame, came and spoke to a crowd in Kayonza. I didn’t understand everything from his speech, but I had some friends help translate the majority of it. The purpose of his visit was to talk about Umuganda, and how important it is to give back and help the community. He also talked about how great of a location Kayonza is, that it borders Tanzania and Uganda and that Rwanda needs to make a good impression and prove that this small country can do just as good as the bigger countries that surround it. Another key topic he discussed was about the youth and how important it is for them to stay in school and get a good education to better their futures. Finally he closed out with how he wants to help the community of Kayonza and those surrounding it, how he wants to rebuild the main roads the people use. It was definitely a community event. It appeared that everyone was out to see him and hear what he had to say. I am sure it was an event the people of Rwanda won’t soon forget.
We have finally started league play! The first weekend, Gahini played against Rukara. It was only the secondary boys that played because Gahini does not have a primary or girls team. After a hard played game, Gahini came out on top over Rukara. The Following weeks league game was Kayonza secondary versus Gahini. The game was very intense and close all the way to the final seconds, but Kayonza lost to Gahini. Kayonza were very disappointed with the loss; but, I told them that Gahini has been working extremely hard and they were improving their game in all areas. And that’s what happens when they don’t take practices seriously. Needless to say, the students in Kayonza took practice a little more serious after that. We recently had Kagame Cup Games and Kayonza won it all! The Kagame Cup Games is a tournament for Men, that are out of school to compete. There were teams from Kayonza, Rukara, Gahini, and Rwinkwavu. The first game Kayonza beat Rukara. That was a great game to watch, both teams were strong and fast, and competed pretty evenly. The next game was Gahini versus Rwinkwavu. Rwinkwavu won but they had to forfeit because they brought students and you can only play in the tournament if you are out of school. So Kayonza played against Gahini for the championship. Gahini came out strong, but Kayonza’s hard work paid off – they won the Championship!!! Congratulations to all of my friends on the Kayonza team. I am very proud of your hard work and perseverance. You never gave up. Great job!
This weekend, I was supposed to play in a soccer game with some friends from the Peace Corps, but the field wasn’t in good shape, and the other field near by was being used for youth games. So we decided to do some educational activities with the kids to help raise awareness about Malaria. We used one of the activities from the Shooting Touch health lessons. Everyone was very thankful for the help and for the activities. Between Shooting Touch teaching and Peace Corp, we are truly reaching out to so many people over here. It’s awesome. It gives a person a great sense of purpose. I will be forever grateful for this opportunity to make a difference in people’s lives. It’s gratifying to the point where it doesn’t even feel like a job.
Let me close by saying that I hope all the mothers out there had a safe and Happy Mother’s Day! And specifically to my Mother: Ditto!