A Kinamba success story

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My name is Denys Hakizimana. I am 32 years old and I was born in the Southern province of Rwanda in the district of Nyanza in 1987. In 1994 during the Genocide against Tutsis, I lost my father at a very young age and after when I was 11 years old, my mother left me and married another man.

Afterwards I came to Kigali in 2005 and in 2008 I met Meg, joined the tailoring classes in Kinamba Community Project and from then life started to change. I started making the animals from using fabrics, and with the help of Meg I managed to sell a lot of them. Meg would many times show me how to make them, sometimes show me how to draw them before they are yet to be made, and a lot more and also help with selling them. Now I am father of 2 children and I am very happy with my wife. I continue to make animals dolls and bags from the fabrics and everything is going well. I opened up a small business where I make the things and I have 4 permanent staff with some other temporary staff members who come depending on how much work is available. 

So far, I have made some achievements which also go in hand with meeting different people as my business expands. Now the quality of the things I make has improved and I have gained some marketing skills that I never had before, a lot has changed and I never knew it could be this way, but still there is along way to go and I thank Meg so much for the help she has offered. My life has truly changed. 

Pictures from 2009 of the wedding of Denys and Esther, in 2018 at my birthday party and a proud family picture from 2019.

I am both pleased and proud to play a part in this story, in helping Denys to live his life in dignity and happiness, in supporting Ora, who wrote the story, through his education, and to Jean de Dieu, also a student in the project, who took the recent pictures for us. 

Wishing you all health, happiness and peace in your lives, may you enjoy life as much a Denys and his family!