Best Friends


Twenty years after the Rwanda genocide, these best friends are the children of former mortal enemies—now reconciled.

The sponsored children of Andrew Birasa and Callixte Karemangingo, who live in southern Rwanda, dance, sing, and play in the sunset after choir practice. Their fathers were able to reconcile after the Rwandan genocide of 1994 with help from World Vision’s powerful peace-building programs which were incorporated into every activity.

Callixte was part of a group that killed Andrew’s wife, Madrine, entire family. Andrew implicated Callixte in the killings and he was sent to prison.

With a house, school supplies, and help to find work, World Vision assisted Callixte’s wife, Marcella, in raising her children. When sponsorship began in their area in 2000, both wives, Madrine and Marcella, became sponsorship volunteers. Their hearts began to soften toward one another because of the work they did with children.

In this community, World Vision continues to espouse peace building and unity. Today the families are best friends—as are their children

Photo ©2013 Jon Warren / World Vision

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