COVID-19 and Compassion’s Work in Rwanda

An in-depth look at the coronavirus pandemic in Rwanda

Last Updated: 10/19/2020

Daily, Rwanda has been recording more COVID-19 recoveries than new positive cases since Sept. 14. The country has recorded only 32 deaths as of October 15, and there are currently less than 750 reported active cases. Most businesses, including restaurants, hotels, shops and tourism operations, have reopened. International air travel has resumed, but land borders remain closed. Upper primary and secondary school students are scheduled to return to schools on Nov. 2. The national curfew hours were reduced by two hours; the curfew is now from 10 p.m. to 4 a.m.

Compassion center workers are communicating with children and caregivers by phone where possible and conducting home visits where it is safe to do so. Small groups have been able to gather to tend to gardens and care for their livestock. Staff members are working within local guidelines to distribute supplies and have been able to deliver 74,964 food packs and 255,953 hygiene kits. Additionally, they have helped 12,547 individuals access medical support. Sponsor gifts to children and families are being delivered as electronic cash transfers. The Compassion Rwanda office is working with local staff to offer counseling support during this difficult season.

COVID response in Rwanda

How is Compassion Currently Operating in Rwanda?

Below, you will find the latest information on how Compassion is currently operating in Rwanda, including status updates on center openings, letter delivery and gift delivery. This is the most current information we have, though it can change quickly. Please know that all children and their families are being checked in on regularly by staff, either in person or by phone, even if the Compassion center is not open for programming.Watch this video for a detailed explanation of how COVID-19 is affecting Compassion centers and how local partners are caring for each registered child during this season.

Are Compassion Centers Open?

At this point, all centers in Rwanda are closed in order to abide by local guidelines. Staff members are still calling and checking in on families, and in some communities they are able to visit children while obeying social distancing guidelines. Because of the generous support of sponsors and donors, they have been able to distribute 74,964 food packs and 255,953 hygiene kits to children and their families!

COVID response in Rwanda

child reading IconStory From the Field

When parents Ildephonse and Devotha realized they had just one day's supply of food left for their family of five, they put their faith in God to provide. COVID-19 restrictions had severely limited their ability to work. Not only were they running out of food, but the family had fallen months behind on their rent.

Thankfully, their 14-year-old son Fabrice is registered in Compassion's Child Sponsorship Program. At just the right moment, a staff member gave the family a call with some exciting news.

“We had food for only a day, and we were hoping only God would save us," says Devotha. "Fortunately, I received a life-saving call from Beata, the health worker at my son’s Compassion center, telling us that we had received gift money from Fabrice’s sponsor. We were so delighted and gave God the glory."

The following morning, the elated mother went with Fabrice to collect the gift money worth 40,000 Rwf (US $40) from Compassion's church partner. “The gift money was timely and a blessing to me since I was pregnant without food and had no job, and the landlord was chasing us out of his house because we had gone three months without paying rent."

The family put the money towards a new rental house and purchased food, including Fabrice's favorites — rice, carrots and potatoes.

"I’m grateful to Fabrice's sponsor for blessing our family during the tough times of COVID-19," said Devotha. "We pray that God protects her and her family always."

How can I pray for Rwanda?

Praise God for the many who have recovered from COVID-19. Continue to pray for God’s protection and healing for the people of Rwanda. For more prayer resources, visit Compassion’s COVID-19 prayer page for prayer guides and a virtual prayer wall.

How Can I Help?

Sponsor a Child in Rwanda
Give to Compassion’s COVID-19 Relief Fund
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