TOPAFRICANEWS STAFF Writer
Members of Gisenyi Bridge Church of the Nazarene have raised Rwf 1.8 million to support Congolese families stranded in Rwanda while borders are closed as one of the measures meant to contain the spread of coronavirus.
The Rubavu District- based church through its Nazarene Compassion Ministry (NCM) used the cash to buy two tons of maize, two tons of beans and 40 boxes of soap, which benefited 50 families from Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).
The relief foodstuffs were handed over to the beneficiaries on Friday, April 17th 2020.
Informal cross border traders, which are dominated by women from Rwanda and DRC, are some of the most hit business operators by the pandemic after Rwanda announced the restriction of movement across its borders with neighbouring countries.
Rev. Simon Pierre Rwaramba, the Church Leader, said they had been inspired by the government’s call to help the most severely vulnerable members of society to cope with the economic consequences of COVID-19.
“Besides these Congolese families, in the previous week we reached out to people with disabilities with the relief foodstuffs as they were struggling to make living as they would only put food on table after carrying cargo with tricycles to DRC,” He noted
He added that, “We are looking forward to continuing sharing food with the most severely vulnerable members of society during this lockdown,”
Rwaramba underscored that since Government announced the lockdown, Gisenyi Bridge Church of the Nazarene has supported a total of 170 vulnerable families including 76 followers of the church.
Djuma Mazarati, one of the Congolese nationals who received relief foodstuffs from the church noted that the donation was timely given the lockdown hardships.
“I am grateful to the Bridge Church of the Nazarene for their generous heart; their donation restored happiness within my family as we would spend two days without putting food on table previously,” He said
Rubavu District Mayor Gilbert Habyarimana, welcomed the development saying, “It significantly contributed towards the vulnerable residents’ welfare during the lockdown,”
He went on to say that the donation will help the beneficiaries implement directives meant to contain the spread of coronavirus by notably staying home.