ACCOMPLISHMENTS TO DATE

THE WATER TANK

WATER TANK

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Access to clean water is a matter of life and death. DRC has one of the lowest rates of access to clean water in the world, with 75% of the population—or 50 million people—having no access at all. Among the consequences of this is diarrhea, the second largest cause of childhood mortality.

Collecting safe water in the ubiquitous yellow jerry-cans can be difficult, dangerous and time-consuming.

In 2013, a donation was made to purchase a water tank, so that the children would have daily access to free, clean water at home! Not long after, thanks to further donations, another water tank was installed for the Tchukudu Women.

Here many people died because of the shortage of water. So that all the children say asante sana to you; every day they say 'Thank  you’.  Kizungu 2014

THE TCHUKUDU WOMEN’S TRAINING CENTRE

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Helping vulnerable women – widows, victims of violence, the desperately poor – was always part of Kizungu’s vision. In 2014, Cathy Cleary enabled him to realize it. While on a visit with Heather Haynes to the Tchukudu Kids’ Home, she met and talked with 10 of the local women. Hearing their stories, Cathy knew that she wanted to do whatever she could to help. With Heather’s support, she established a training centre where the women could learn valuable skills — such as sewing, basket weaving and fabric dyeing — which in turn could help them gain financial independence for themselves and their families. And so, the Tchukudu Women’s Training Centre was born. For further information on this important enterprise, please see the following links

  • Bridging Post’s site on the Women’s Training Centre

  • Courage Congo’s update on the Centre

  • Canada/Africa Community Health Alliance’s description of the program

A NEW HOME

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When Canadian artist Heather Haynes met Kizungu in January 2012, it was a meeting that would have profound consequences for both of them and for the Tchukudu Kids.  

Heather committed herself to helping Kizungu provide a better life for the children and set about raising funds to construct a new home. The small, wooden shack which housed the 12 original orphans was, by then, totally inadequate.  Exactly one year after that fateful meeting the children moved into their new home.

The children now have hope to live in their house. It was a dream for them, but when they see how the construction is going at full speed, they dance and say "Asanti." Without your contribution, the children would be street children. So that we must say Asanti. Kizungu 2012

Today the home accommodates 30 children, with over 200 more orphans living with welcom/foster families in the neighbourhood.

SHOWERS, A HYGENIC TOILET

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The toilet for the original house consisted of a hole in the ground surrounded by torn pieces of plastic and fabric.  This was clearly not very hygienic, and the Senior class of St.Stephen’s School in Rome decided to improve the sanitary and hygiene conditions for the children by raising funds to construct a brand new brick block with toilets and showers.

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One of our first important purchases was the electric mill in 2011 for the grinding of maize, cassava, soya and sorghum. Not only was this used for food supplies for the orphans, but it generated a small income from the local women who came to have their own maize etc. ground.

The Children danced when I turned the motor on. They say thank you very much. –Kizungu (November 2011)

There was no mill in our road and the mamas are very happy to have a mill nearby where they can have their maize, cassava etc. ground, and they say thank you to you and to all your friends.  –Kizungu (December, 2011)

THE ELECTRIC MILL

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THE PLAYGROUND

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When their new house was finished, the children were very happy, but they had nowhere to play. The area in front of the house consisted of piles of solidified lava – a result of the 2002 eruption of Mt.Nyiragongo, one of the most active volcanoes in the world. In such conditions games were either impossible or else very dangerous. Outside the grounds of the orphanage lay more volcanic rubble and it was not safe.  

"As I watched the children one summer standing around in small groups outside the house, I thought that we could transform this area into a flat, grassy safe area for them to play on. Kizungu was quick to follow up on the idea. The same day, workers arrived to measure the area, draw up a plan and calculate costs. The children were excited and they immediately began to work to clear away the rubble and to flatten the ground. It was wonderful to watch them engage so actively and enthusiastically with this project. When I returned the following summer, I was delighted to see the children playing football, skipping, or just sitting down and talking together." 
— Helen, 2014