The Challenge

The 1994 genocide left one million people dead in Rwanda, forcing thousands to flee their homes and leaving behind a legacy of fractured communities and vastly reduced livestock numbers.

Landlocked and hilly, Rwanda is also one of the most densely populated countries in Africa, and this places huge pressures on the environment. Most families only have tiny plots of land, with degraded soils.

In addition, HIV/Aids rates are high, and malnutrition is widespread. The country also lost much of its livestock in the 1994 violence.

The Approach

Due to its turbulent history, Send a Cow places a special focus on social development work in Rwanda, helping neighbours from different ethnic backgrounds come together.

Predominantly working with women, orphaned children and people with HIV/AIDS, our approach has proved so popular the Rwandan government has adopted it into their national policy.

Send a Cow provides Rwandans with good quality cows, goats and smaller animals, while also training them in sustainable organic farming. Access to water is limited in Rwanda, so we train farmers in water harvesting to ensure they can care for their animals properly.

The Impact

Our approach has proven so successful that it has been adopted by the Rwandan Government right across the country. Communities fractured by fear after the genocide are now finding common goals in Send a Cow projects. Widows, orphans, disabled people and those with HIV/Aids are discovering they can make a living – and by doing so earn the respect of their wider communities.