Chrissie Chapman, Burundi, Central Africa
CRIB (Children Rescued in Burundi)
During the genocide in Burundi in the 90’s Chrissie Chapman began a work to rescue children who had suffered unimaginable hardship and lost their parents in the crisis that took place then. Her commitment to these children has gone way beyond the call of duty, as she has adopted three of them Hannah (left), Ben, and Lydia (right).
There have been more than fifty children in the CRIB work, and they all are going, or have been, to The King’s School, a Christian school where students are educated in English, along with other folk from the city. Many of these fifty are now in secondary school, or have gone on to further education or work.
Chrissie wrote a book about her life with CRIB called "The night the angels came", and it is available on www.amazon.co.uk
visit CRIB's website at sites.google.com/site/cribburundi
CHRISSIE'S LATEST NEWSLETTER - December 2018
Greetings once again from Burundi.
Christmas is without any doubt my favourite time of the year, mostly because my children come and spend Christmas at home, and to be together with family is just the most wonderful experience as we chat and try and catch up with a whole years news in just a couple of weeks, but somehow we seem to cover everything that’s been important to us...and always seem to be left with the same comment....where did the year go? This year won’t be any different!
Here in Burundi with our CRIB family we are for sure in a season of change as all the children have grown up and we now have a home full of young adults, our youngest being 17 years. The vision and aim of CRIB has always been to raise the babies and young children who came to us during the war years, to raise them as a family together, to educate and lead them to a place where they can be independent and hopefully one day get married and have families of their own.
At this time, we have only 9 youngsters still in school here in Burundi and 6 of them will graduate next summer, which will leave just 3 still studying in the King’s School which is the school we started for the purpose of educating the CRIB children. It is amazing to me to see how far we have come...
We have 5 of our young people now studying in Kenya.
Keve...computer sciences, Enoch...engineering, Sam...journalism, Niyongabo...medicine and Esther...psychology. Hoping to join this group in Kenya in January will be Rebecca who has applied to the same university where Esther is studying to take a business course.
In Uganda we have quite a large crowd.
Belize and Janine completed their hotel and catering courses and are working in the area of Jinja getting experience in catering. Janine is actually about to move to a new position in Kampala this week, new job, new place to live, new challenges and blessings to move with into the new year.
Then we have Maria doing midwifery, she started out in Jinja and is hoping to continue in Kampala in the new year.
At YMCA college in Kampala we have:
Kosami...studying ITC, Jesse...business, Edward....mechanics, Estella...business, Ruth...early years teaching, Joy and Oscalina both doing catering and Delayida...hairdressing.
Pacifique graduated in hotel and catering in Kigali and is working in a hotel doing an attachment for his work experience.
Moise is still working in Nigeria. He will be coming home for Christmas so we will catch up with all his news then.
Grace is still in Oklahoma. She graduated in the summer and was able to get a work permit to stay in USA until next summer so has a job working as a journalist in Oklahoma gaining good work experience and giving her time to think about what and where to go next.
We have quite a number of youngsters who have completed full time education at the King’s school and are now either working in Burundi or have managed to get some internship/ training position locally, so still quite a number are living at CRIB as these youngsters don’t earn enough to be able to rent and live independently yet so we will continue to support them as needed and as we can.
Over the years, as the war settled and the situation in the country became more stable, a number of relatives of some of the children who came to CRIB just turned up at various times on our doorstep to visit and so we have encouraged those relatives to connect during holiday times. Now about 6 of the youngsters who were brought up in CRIB have been able to move out of the CRIB home and go and live with family members.
We also have 3 young men, now renting a small house together just locally, all working and living independently. It is very satisfying to see these youngsters who arrived as babies, so traumatised and in such bad shape, holding down jobs. It is indeed a blessing as we come towards the end of another year to look back and be able to say .....’Look what the Lord has done’. We are blessed.
Life is never without challenges, but to be able to stand and see beyond all the challenges, to be able to look forward with expectancy and great excitement at all the Lord has in store for us next year is a blessing.
I myself and my own 3 children continue to do well.
Lydia is still in Kigali, loving her work and Dylan now aged 3 is really doing well and enjoying nursery school.
Hannah and Ben are still living in London. Both are still pushing forward to explore career options which is a challenge. Life after university is a huge challenge for most youngsters even with family support close at hand. For me being so far from them as they work their way through the amazingly high costs of trying to survive in London while finding the right career path is at times rather daunting! But we are here, we all survived another year and Ben released his first EP in November. We have a lot to give thanks for.
As we look forward to all that 2019 is holding, I take this opportunity to thank you once again for all your love and support this year and I wish you a very Happy and Blessed Christmas and New Year.
Click here to watch the story of Grace, who was rescued, brought to Chrissie and is now a thriving young woman. Amazing grace.
The Cow Project, Burundi
We also are supporting a project to help hill farmers acquire cows and grow food so that they are well nourished and give good milk yields. Our support helps to buy cows, which are given to hill farmers who are also supplied with seed to enable them to grow suitable food for fodder. Once the cow has calved and the milk begins to flow the farmer is able to use some of the milk for his own personal needs, sell the remainder back to the project, and in time pay for the cow that was donated.
These cows are a real life line for villages and farmers. Their families not only get better nutrition and are consequently healthier, but they have a sustainable income too. The milk is also taken by the project and sold in the towns.
We are also contributing towards a machine which pasteurises the milk so that it keeps longer and is in better condition than it would be in its raw state.
As the farmers are able to buy their own cows and repay the loans this is then reinvested in the scheme to help other farmers obtain cows.
Evariste, who runs the Cow Project, also feeds milk to some of the approx. 5000 street kids of Bujumbura. He plans to open a street café where the kids can come and have a cup of milk for free.