Agahozo-Shalom is a very special place. I spent a year volunteering here, and it was the most amazing experience of my life. Agahozo takes the most vulnerable kids in a very poor country and gives them a new chance at life. The kids' change over the course of their time at Agahozo is spectacular. Many of the kids who arrive at Agahozo come from backgrounds unimaginable to people in developed countries. Most of the children are orphans and have lost one or both parents. Many kids have abused or lived in desperate poverty. Agahozo lets them transform into the kind of people they are capable of being. By the end of their time at Agahozo, children who couldn't speak one work of English can write stories and give speeches in English. Girls who were afraid to speak their minds express themselves and become leaders.
Agahozo is unique because it focuses on healing the whole child. When the kids arrive in the village, they are divided into "families" of sixteen children, with a "Mama," a "big brother" or "big sister" and an English-speaking "cousin." Kids who were on their own for years get the support and love that they need. A variety of enrichment programs and community service helps the kids realize their potential and shows that they have the ability to help other people.
Agahozo changes lives every day. I am so lucky that I had the chance to be part of this wonderful organization.