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7th Annual Fundraising Gala - ‘The Future of Rwanda is NOW’

What a night! Thank you to all those who came out to support INSPIRE!africa’s evening full of fun, generosity and dancing! Drum roll please… the total amount raised from the 7th Annual Fundraiser is a very generous $95,000! This incredible contribution will ensure the fantastic work supported by INSPIRE!africa will continue.

For those of you that could not attend, you missed quite a fete. The evening began with guests enjoying the delicious hors d’euvres and cocktails while perusing the beautiful artwork inside Webster Galleries.

There were tables selling Christmas ornaments made in Rwanda and Rwanda inspired art cards designed by several local artists as well as a very large silent auction with lots of great items.

Will_Ferguson.jpgAlix and Margaret spoke to the group about what your donations have helped accomplish over the last year (please see the summary below) before introducing renowned Canadian author, Will Ferguson, who gave his touching personal account of Rwanda and it’s complexities.

The festivities culminated with some traditional Rwandan dances performed beautifully by Jeanette, Olivia, and Christelle.

Experience Rwanda! – Volunteer Trip Spring 2014 – Information Session

Never been to Rwanda? Here’s your chance! For anyone interested in going on a volunteer trip to Rwanda in May/June 2014, an information session will be held on January 15th at 7:00. Please register online before January 13 at  HYPERLINK "mailto:This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it." This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Registrants will be contacted regarding location details.

This will be INSPIRE!africa’s fourth volunteer trip to Rwanda and is quite significant as 2014 is the 20th Anniversary of the genocide. Participants will have the opportunity to visit programs that INSPIRE!africa supports and to meet the people that have benefited from your help. You will also experience the beauty of the country first hand. Past participants will also be at the January information session to share their experiences and answer any questions. Please see the Summer 2012 Newsletter, Summer 2010 Newsletter and the ‘You Learn More Than You Teach’ testimonial by previous volunteer Pamela Romanchuk to learn more about previous volunteer trips.

INSPIRE!africa now accepting online donations at CanadaHelps.org!
Please visit our website or  https://www.canadahelps.org/dn/8512 if you wish to donate online. Although we are excited to make donating even easier for you with this online option, we still prefer mail-in donations (sent to 2330 3rd Ave NW Calgary T2N 0K8) to help reduce administrative costs.

The 2012-2013 Year in Review

Entrepreneurship Program

Your money helped fund a youth entrepreneurship program, which provides university students with 6 months of training in all aspects of business development. From managing time, money and staff to creating marketing and business plans.  These students learn what it takes to develop and run their own businesses. The pilot project for 150 students that started in the spring year was very successful.  Some are receiving micro credit loans so they can develop their business plans.  

Secondly, you funded a help line that offers trauma counseling and legal advice to university students who are still dealing with the trauma from the horrors they witnessed during the genocide. Students throughout Rwanda have access to this service by simply making a phone call.

The Rwanda Multi Learning Centre in Kigali

Your donations helped to pay for the salaries of the four Rwandan teachers at the Centre.  You also paid for some IT equipment to enhance the learning opportunities of the students.  

Livestock for Widows

Last year your donations purchased:

  • 4 Cows
  • 44 Goats
  • 10 Honey bees and hives

The widows benefiting from this livestock program now have an income well above the poverty line and can pay for food, education for those they care for, health care, decent clothing, and much more.  

The livestock program also sustains a micro credit loan program.   A small percentage of a widow’s earnings from her livestock is reinvested into a loan program so that cooperatives in her community can be established.  


Last year your donations paid for 15 houses to be renovated.  

Thank you so much for making this all possible.

Last but not least, A BIG THANK YOU to all those who made our 2013 fundraiser, ‘The Future of Rwanda is NOW’ such a great event:

  • John Webster and Websters Gallery staff
  • Will Ferguson for his beautiful description of Rwanda and its complexities
  • Local artists, Jamie Lafond, Theresa Simons, Karen Aasen, Stella Bowers and Graham Diehl, who contributed art for the art cards,
  • Lynn Morin for coordinating the art cards, and donor recognition
  • Joel Riker Fox from Live Sound & Event production,
  • Isabel Ramsay, photographer,
  • Rwandan dancers: Jeanette, Olivia, and Christelle
  • Manna Catering
  • Primates A Go Go for the Rwandan Christmas ornaments,
  • Those who contributed silent auction items,
  • The volunteer groups that made it all a success ,
  • The production team that contributed design and printing of materials,
  • To all those who supported INSPIRE!africa through purchasing cards, books, Rwandan goods and silent auction items
  • Those who donated to the many projects including renovations for five houses

We would like to wish you all a very happy Christmas, a joyful holiday season and best wishes for 2014.

Alix, Craig, Diane and Margaret