To enable orphaned and vulnerable youth to realize their potential by providing a safe and secure living environment, health care, education and necessary life skills. Through these efforts it is our vision to create socially responsible citizens in Rwanda and, eventually, around the world.
WHY A YOUTH VILLAGE?
Modeled after Yemin Orde, an Israeli youth village established in 1953 to care for orphans of the Holocaust, Agahozo-Shalom is a place where "tears are dried" (signified by the Kinyarwanda word "agahozo") and where vulnerable youth can “live in peace” (from the Hebrew word "shalom").
ASYV's model combines four essential elements to encourage our youths' intellectual and emotional growth:
- The loving support of a family
- A structured education
- Health and wellness services
- Enriching extracurricular programs
The family structure and wider community of our Village is key to our students' healing. The Village places each youth in a residential family, an environment which fosters a "brother" and "sister" dynamic. A Rwandan family mama guides our youth through the healing process in each home, and holds the primary responsibility for each child's physical and emotional well-being. This system provides our students with a newfound sense of security, fosters academic success, and encourages the formation of life-long bonds of friendship and support.
The youth of Agahozo-Shalom come from all 30 districts in Rwanda, and we aim to select at least four representatives from each of these districts every year. All of our students carry the culture of their home district, unique talents, and the insatiable desire to learn and grow. Despite bearing the weight of incredible hardship, our kids are survivors. They have insurmountable drive and the determination to overcome the past and build a brighter future.
We invest in Rwanda’s most vulnerable youth with the understanding that they are capable of great accomplishments. Our students are delightful, inspiring, and eager to become happy and successful adults.