Located in the middle of Sub-Saharan Africa, Rwanda is often called “the land of a thousand hills”. It has been known for its natural beauty, rich culture and breathtaking people. Unfortunately, these qualities have been overshadowed by a horrific past. In 1994, the country was the site of genocide. Tragically, approximately one million individuals were killed in a little over three months. This terrifying event decimated the country’s economic base, impoverishing the population. The largest impact was felt by women and children, who were overcome by a sense of hopelessness. This event has led many people to believe that peace and prosperity for this small nation is impossible. However, Rwanda is today experiencing miraculous renewal and reconciliation. Its people have proven resilient and their willingness to forgive has moved them towards unity. Rwanda is being rebuilt from the ground up, stronger and more resourceful than ever before. The reconciliation of the people of Rwanda is one of the greatest stories of forgiveness in modern history. While great strides have been made in these rebuilding efforts, there is still a large number of uneducated and impoverished people; children as well as adults.
The vision for Nibakure Community Village (formerly Nibakure Children’s Village (NCV) began in the heart of Floriane Nibakure, a native of Rwanda. Her difficult childhood, including separation from her biological mother at just a few months old and abuse by stepmothers, often left her feeling like an abandoned child. Although she immigrated to the United States in 1988 and raised a family here, Floriane continued to feel a connection to–and compassion for–the children of Rwanda. In addition to assisting many of her own family members to come to the United States, Floriane had a dream of helping more of Rwandan children. In May of 2004, she was inspired by a woman who spoke about her experience of building an orphanage in India. Thus began the transformation of her long-held “heart for the children of Rwanda” into a plan for a children village in her homeland. As she began speaking of this vision, others were inspired to join her, and plans for Nibakure Children’s Village were born. Floriane has assembled a team of likeminded individuals and has immersed herself in this calling. Countless hours of hard work and many trips to Rwanda later, NCV is now a registered non-profit in both the US and Rwanda, governed by a Board of Directors. When visitors go to NCV in Nyamata, they often compare the village to an oasis seating on top of a hill with a stunning view. The village is surrounded by an impoverished community with which NCV partners and to change its future. The Rwandan government has donated eleven and a half (11.5) acres of land. Many lives of children have been changed, thanks to NCV.