Kigeme, Kiziba, and Gihembe are names of refugee camps within Rwanda. The tragic 1994 genocide and years of fighting among Hutu, Tutsi, and governmental factions displaced nearly 2.5 million people by the end of 1999.
Repatriation efforts are attempting to reintegrate these refugees into a country that has a high population density. Rarely in human history has a society insisted that all of its people live together again, side by side, in the aftermath of genocide. More than 84,000 refugees remain in Rwanda, neighboring Uganda, D.R. Congo, Burundi, and other countries of Central Africa.
In Rwanda, a special partnership among One World Projects, Economic Development Imports, and FACED (the Fiber and Craft Entrepreneurial Development Center) is bringing new hope to Rwandese as well as Congolese and Burundi women and their families who reside in refugee camps.
This program sends American-made manual knitting machines to Rwanda, and trains women to make items appropriate for Western markets. In the last year more than 90 knitting machines have been donated to three refugee camps, and more than 400 women have been trained to knit beautiful hand-loomed products.