I am Nancy Strachan, President of Rwandan HUGS, Inc. in Bedford, VA and I may have recently spoken with you or received contact info for you regarding the upcoming VA visit (Sept. 25-Oct. 4) of three very gifted young men from Niyo Cultural Centre in Kigali, Rwanda. They provide an outstanding and exciting cultural experience for their host schools, galleries, churches, etc. by offering not 1 or 2 but 3 areas of creative expression: art (vibrant paintings as images in links below demonstrate), traditional Rwandan Dance, and lively drumming. Pacifique Niyosenga, a 24 year old genocide survivor/visionary, founded Niyo Cultural Center in 2013 and is an accomplished artist and a gifted dancer. Figy is also a highly talented artist, and the drummer is considered to be one of the best traditional drummers in Rwanda.

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 They provide an exciting blend of inspirational programs, performances and art exhibitions in schools, churches, galleries, community organizations, etc.  Although their goal is to support the Niyo Art Centre street children through what they earn when they tour through sponsorships, donations, art sales, offerings, or ticket sales there is NO basic charge to host them. Below are some links to more information about Pacifique, the Niyo Cultural Centre in Rwanda, and videos/interviews. His 4-5 minute interview with CNN is a quick intro to him and his ministry. Pacifique and another Rwandan were artists-in-residence in the St. Louis area in 2015. His Missouri hostess knocked on many doors to arrange their first tour, but those 5 original host schools are excited to have them return and 4 additional St. Louis schools have invited them this year and are paying for their plane tickets to the USA.

 

  The three young men arrive in Charlottesville September 5 for approximately a month.  Venues in that area are being taken care of by our colleague, Jim Respass. Basically, Rwandan HUGS in Bedford plans to host them from Sept. 25-Oct. 4, primarily in Bedford/Lynchburg/Roanoke/Central VA. They will be in eastern VA (Courtland/Franklin) Sept. 28/29.  

 

  Please let me know if you wish to discuss hosting these gifted young men. Their calendar is filling quickly, so don't delay. Don't make any decisions until you review some links below as I believe you will be quite impressed. I have been traveling/ministering in Rwanda since 2007 and Pacifique is perhaps THE most exceptional young man I have met in all those years. I am so honored and excited to be able to share him with others in Virginia. Prepare to be amazed by their gifts! 

Blessings,

Nancy Strachan, President/Founder,Rwandan HUGS, Inc.,

630 Mountain Avenue, Bedford, VA 24523

phones: home/office: 540-586-4446 and mobile: 540-314-2800

e-mail: strachanl@aol.com, rwandanhugs@aol.com

web site: www.rwandanhugs.com  (no recent update so there is not mention of Niyo, etc.)

 

Background info: Niyo Cultural Center in Kigali, Rwanda was established in 2013 by 

Pacificue Niyonsenga

, a 1994 genocide survivor and former street boy. Currently Niyo serves 112 vulnerable children, the number having risen from 28 when the project was established in 2013. The center provides art, dance, and drumming instruction and seeks sponsors for the children to attend school in Kigali. The center uses proceeds from art sales to fund these activities. The kids perform for tourists, weddings, and hotels and receive donations to sponsor the activities. The center purchased tailoring machines to support 24 of the kid's mothers to help provide sustainable income for their families.