A New Friend

January 25, 2012

emma Hogwood, from the One Dollar Campaign in Kigali, learned about the Village from 2 sisters who study at ASYV and live in a hostel in Kigali during holiday breaks. These two girls, according to Jemma are ASYV's best advocates. She said that after hearing the sisters' accounts and having her boss tell her that ASYV is amazing she decided that she needed to come and see the place for herself. Once here, she became enamored by the layout of the Village, the “homey” atmosphere, supportive environment, and the holistic education and learning experience provided to the students. In addition, she was inspired by the passion she heard in each of the staff members' voice and the eagerness of each student to succeed. She stated that she will leave remembering the overall philosophy of the Village and try to emulate it in the work she is doing with the hostel.

Jemma, who oversees some of the informal education and clinical programs at a new hostel that will be opening in March for university students who are Genocide orphans, was however curious about what would happen to all of the graduates once they left ASYV. After having full support for 4 years, she is worried that they would essentially be dropped back off in the “real world” to face the harsh realities of life without enough support. Jemma also had a particular interest in the living environment, the rules, discipline and informal education structure of the village since it is an area in which she is centrally responsible for at the youth hostel in Kigali.