Sponsoring a child in the developing world does not involve only the financial aid. It is important to note that through close relationship, support and interaction there is a special bond created between the child and the sponsor. This is the reason as to why we have named our long-term scheme “Heart Adoption” because strong emotional connections go far beyond the material support. We encounter many cases where the relationships formed are very much the same as those in the families and are kept by both parties still after the completion of the programme. Here is an extraordinary story of the girl who showed the world that living with a disability is not inability.
Formerly “Have a Heart Adoption” child, now the queen of poetry in Rwanda.
Recently we were taken aback by the wonderful news. “The New Times”, the national English language newspaper in Rwanda published an article about one of our children, and it is truly inspiring. Eighteen years old Ange Theonastine received three awards at Kigali Vibrates with Poetry competition held on 29th April 2017: one for Best English Poet, Best General Poet, and another for Best Popular Poet. The event features poems in three languages: Kinyarwanda which is the official language of Rwanda, English and French.
Ange delivered an exceptional performance, but she won over an audience not only with her talent but also with her personality. Ange is a person with a disability and is permanently confined to a wheelchair. However, this doesn’t limit and stop her from fulfilling her dreams. Her enthusiasm and dedication are incredibly inspiring. The victory, in her case, also has another meaning, it is overcoming those daily battles and struggles non-existent for people without disabilities.
Ange was not always living with a disability. When she was born, nothing indicated a slight possibility of future complications. Only when Ange began to show first signs of physical development delay, her parents got worried. Unfortunately, the poverty Ange’s family was living in and lack of access to health care made it impossible for the girl to undergo medical procedures or therapy. She started using a wheelchair when she was five what has proved to be pretty tough in the environment not adapted to fulfil the needs of people with disabilities.
The helping hand of the Sisters of the Angels Congregation
Ange was sponsored through the “Have a Heart Adoption” for disabled children programme. The five years sponsorship covered the expenses of education and rehabilitation in specialised ability centre. It changed her life. The Sisters of the Angels congregation, mentioned above, played a key role in helping Ange. They made sure that she also received an emotional support throughout her journey.
Ange is incredibly talented and gifted but, first and foremost, very active at Cyabingo High School where she still studies. She presides the media club that helps skilled individuals to develop their skills further. Ange also participates in debating clubs and painting workshops.
Living with a disability is not inability
Ange is fully aware of her condition and the fact that she will be confined to the wheelchair for the rest of her life. She is still driven to accomplish many things in her life and wants to become a journalist regarding her professional career. When we asked her to describe herself, she said: “The Impossible is Possible”, and yes, she does prove it whenever she can. Recently she participated in a fashion show in Rwanda, not to present the latest collection, but to demonstrate the public that disability is not inability and challenge the attitude towards people with disabilities.
You can find more information here:
Ange live performance at Kigali Vibrates with Poetry event: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uKKSbW9egBY&feature=youtu.be
Ange’s website: https://angepoetry.wordpress.com/
Additional information about “Have a Heart Adoption” for disabled children: https://www.maitri.pl/dzieci-niepelnosprawne-ang/