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At Graduation, Olive Shares What Inspires Her

Graduation marks an important milestone for the women in our programs, as they celebrate all they have accomplished together over the past year with determination and resilience. 

Inspired by this transformation, Olive, a WfWI-Rwanda graduate, wrote a poem that she shared with her fellow classmates and friends at their graduation ceremony in Kayonza.   


Olive stands with her fellow graduates as she reads her poem, celebrating the impact the program has had on her life. 

Olive's Poem: Let me praise Women

Let me sing and praise, jump and dance, praising a caring parent who welcomes whoever comes to her. This is you, Women for Women.

You found us, as we were lonely. You looked at us telling us not to worry, here I come, I see/understand your sorrow, I know where you are coming from.

As soon as we heard this, we couldn’t believe you because the one who broke us, broke all in us. No one else can calm our sorrow but the Maker of all, the one who fashioned Rwanda.

While still doubting your words, you told us, "Don’t worry, we are here now: the Rwandan proverb said it well, God spends the day elsewhere and comes to spend the night home in Rwanda. Now it is your turn."

As quickly as we were enrolled, our pictures were taken, then we were told here are your teachers. Be eager to learn because knowledge is our goal.


Women come together in classes of 25 for WfWI's yearlong program at the Women's Opportunity Centre in Kayonza.
Photo credit: Alison Wright

We have been told our rights, we are not left behind in decision-making. We are now familiar to family planning. Now we even work with each other, undeniably no one grows alone.

We supported each other without discrimination. We didn’t focus on our groups only, we also went outside our groups. Definitely what’s important is to support one another, which is actually what we are taught in the Rwandan culture.

Livestock, we have. Beautiful dresses we have. Houses have been built. Vocations we have learned. All of us women we’re exemplary, no one else is behind this but Women for Women.

Now we can cook delicious meals. We are now specialized in baking tasty cakes and donuts, our pancakes are special.


WfWI participants learn how to bake bread, chapatis, and samosas to sell in the local market at the Seven Loaves Bakery in Kibeho, Rwanda. Photo credit: Alison Wright

Chapatis are being cooked, homemade biscuits have become our specialty. Our pizzas and meatballs are just unique. Surely, we are not lazy women: we have applied what you taught us.

Beads are also there, beautiful earrings and pretty necklaces. We decided not to wear jewelry made by others if not from us.


Beaded necklaces made by members of the Agaseke Vision Cooperative. To read more about the cooperative, click here.
Photo Credit: Alison Wright

Farming has not been left behind. Vegetables are being grown, we know how to cook them to fight against malnutrition and never host it again in our homes. This is even our country’s goal.

Pruning coffee is now safe, our coffee is protected. Mushrooms are being cultivated if you don’t believe us, you are welcome too see it with your eyes in Kinenyeri.

Now we know how to do business. You didn’t waste your time teaching us. Teaching someone eager to learn is worth it as you can notice it. We are well and healthy!


Miragire is a member of an agricultural cooperative in Kayonza started by WfWI graduates. Photo credit: Alison Wright

I end this poem thanking the government of Rwanda, that brought us from nowhere to somewhere, I thank our Sector, Districts and even our Province and above all our sponsor Women for Women.

And all of you who are here gathered. May God keep on blessing all of us. I wish you all peace.

>> Learn how you can support a woman like Olive today. <<

Original Text:

Reka nterure ndate ndange

Ndirimbe nsimbuke mbyine

Ndate umubyeyi wuje ubwuzu

Udasubiza inyuma abamusanga

Ari wowe wimeni for wimeni

Wadusanze twigunze shenge

Utubonye ui “ni muhumure mama

Dore nje ntari umubyeyi gito

Agahinda kanyu ndakareba

N’aho muvuye ndahabonye.”

Muihe tucyumva iryo jambo ryiza

Tuti reka data ibyo ntibishoboka

Kuko uwadushenye yaradushegeshe

Cyeretse Gihanga wahanze u Rwanda

Niwe watumara agahinda rwose

Tugishidikanya dutyo twese

Muti “muhumure erega twaje”

Umunyarwanda yavuze neza

Ati “ Yirirwa ahandi igataha I Rwanda”

None uyu munsi ni mwe mutahiwe

Baratwanditse bidatinze

Baradufotoye turakomeje

Bati “abarimu banyu ngabo”

Mugire umwete mjuze mwige

Kuko kujijuka ari yo ntego”

Uburenganzira bwacu turabumenye

Mugufata ibyemezo ntiduhezwa

Kuboneza urubya twabigeze ho

Gufatanya n’abandi ntitwatanzwe

Erega n’ubundi ntawigira

Twateranye inkunga tutarobanuye

Ntitwibanze mu matsinda gusa

N’abo hanze byabageze ho

Kuko n’ubundi icyambere arukubana

Ninawo muco mwiza w’abanyarwanda

Ngayo amatungo ngiyo imyambaro

Amazu yarasanywe andi yarubatswe

Ngiyo imyuga hirya no hino

Abagore twese turasobanutse

Nyamara ntawundi, ni Wimeni

Twategura ibyo kurya byiza

Gateau izo twitaga iz’abazungu

Tuzizi cyane ndabigutuye

Amandazi meza kandi aryoshye

Pancake ntiwareba

Capati nziza zirategurwa

Biscuit na crepe n’ibyacuPizza naboulette nabyo n’uko

Erega ntabwo turi ibigwari

Twashyize mubikorwa rwose

Abandi nabo bati turaje

Iningi nziza n’ibikomo byazo

Amaherena nayo ntiyasigaye

Tuti ntakwambara iby’ahandi

Tuzajya turimbishwa n’ibyiwacu

Ab’ubuhinzi bati twatanzwe

Imboga nziza turazihinga

Tuzitegure neza iwacu

Imirire mibi icike iwacu

Ni nayo ntego y’uru Rwanda

Gukata ikawa ubu turrinzwe

Nta bisambo wasanga mo rwose

Ibihunyo turabihinga

Niba ugira ngo turabeshya

Uzaze urebe mu Kinyenyeri

Bizinesi ubu turayizi

Ntimwagosoreyemurucaca

Ubwira uwumva ntavunika

Ngira ngo namwe murabireba

Turasa neza nk’abadashonje

Ndangije nshimira Reta y’ubumwe bw’abanyarwanda

Yadukuye mu kaga n’akangaratete

Ndashimira ubuyobozi bw’umurenge

Akarere ndetse n’intara

N’umuterankunga wacu Wimeni for Wimeni

Namwe abateranye hano

Imana ikomeze iduhunde ibyiza.

Mugire amahoro