Maraly Bambridge

35 Birch Drive

Brantham, Manningtree


CO11 1TG







NUMBER  29                                                                                                       DATE:   22.02.2017  










It was an absolute delight to meet the 29 ladies who had almost completed their training in Munyiginya Sector.  I visited them four times whilst I was in Rwanda in January, once with the Sector Executive Secretary, once with the Rwamagana District Vice Mayor, another day with the Planning Director of the District and I called with my driver on the way out of Kigali to Rwamagana.  30 ladies originally signed up and 29 finished the course, which I think is very good.  


We had various discussions at the different visits and I was very impressed by the way the students had applied themselves to the work in hand and how they had discussed their own future.  This six months has enabled them to make dresses, shirts, blouses, school uniforms for both boys and girls, a variety of bags and a rug.  They told me that they would like to do a further two months, in which the trainer would teach them to make suits for both men and women.  I agreed to this.  When we came to discuss the future, I discovered that they had looked very seriously at the way forward.  They wanted to stay together and form a co-operative, but they knew they would need some financial help to get this off the ground.  I had further discussions with the Local Authority and the Trainer.  To do this they need a further 3 heavy duty sewing machines and will need materials to set up with.  The Local Authority will take the responsibility for teaching them the organisational practice needed to operate within the Rwandan regulations.  We have found new premises for them which are larger and situated opposite the local market.  Additionally, the rent is less than we are currently paying.


I now have someone in Rwamagana,who is totally trustworthy, to help me, which means that the work can be done without me being there.  He has organised all the purchases for me, negotiated good prices and presented me with a full set of receipts when I visited.  This has made progress much quicker and easier



I called in, unexpectedly, at the Maternity Unit in Ntunga, which is about 3 or 4 miles from the training site.  To my great joy, the unit is being run well, is clean with the new cleaning buckets etc. in full use.  I was delighted to meet the baby pictured below who had been born on the morning I visited.  


The staff were very pleased to see me and their enthusiasm is wonderful to see.  We had a long chat about the work being done and it is now the favourite place for the pregnant ladies to have their babies.  The number of births continues to grow by the month, the average being 30.





I also met two Mums who had brought their one week old babies back for checks.  I am informed that the ante-natal and post-natal clinics are working well, as well as birth control and HIV advice being given.  They were still in need of a fridge to keep the medicines in; this has now been purchased and is in place.  The number of births in January was 30 and in February 29.


Any ideas or help in fundraising will be greatly appreciated – I am always willing to come along and give my support.  Coffee mornings, garden party, sales etc. are all welcome.


Please save your foreign currency, odd bits of broken silver or gold e.g. the odd broken earring.  All of these can and do raise money for the cause.


I would ask you to remember that I am happy to speak to any group – please call me on 01206 393022.  


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