Patrick receiving school materials

Impact Hope: Restoring hope amongst vulnerable children in refugee settings

Taking children to school is paramount but emotional support, environment, materials and guidance contribute to a better education for children.

Twenty-year-old Patrick is a student in his sixth year of high school. He is a tall, dark-skinned boy who always wears a smile on his face, and loves learning Math, Economics, and Geography. His parents fled from the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) when he was just six years old, due to political unrest. Patrick has most of his memories in Rwanda, because he has grown up here.

Patrick's family did not have money to take him to boarding school, so he went to a day school where he would have to walk to school every day. Sometimes, he would get to school late, which would make him lose concentration in class. Impact Hope started paying Patrick's school fees in 2019 when he joined his fourth year of high school.

Patrick with his family
Patrick with his family of eight; he has five siblings.


“After completing my third year of high school, I got the opportunity to be enrolled by Impact Hope. They would pay tuition fees for the rest of my high school years. It was a dream come true for me”, says Patrick.

When he got selected, Patrick knew his education struggles were over. He was taken to a boarding school, something he had always prayed for. “Besides school fees, they also give me and other students they support, all the necessary scholastic materials”, he adds.

From senior four, Patrick’s grades started improving because he now had all the time to concentrate on his education. They improved so much, that Patrick moved from the twenties to the first two positions in his class, with exceptional grades. His dream is to become a banker, and he is working hard to achieve this. Being in his final year of high school, Patrick knows that now is the time to make his dream come true.

Impact Hope does not only pay tuition fees for children, but also encourages them to start thinking of what they want to be in the future. They also encourage them to enrol in vocational skills classes that can help them earn an income. To Patrick, it is a good platform for students to dream big. He also feels at home because they get time to meet with other students to share ideas on how best they can use the chance they have.

Patrick does not take for granted the opportunity they have, because he knows it is a huge blessing that not even many nationals have. He always takes time to advise his peers to embrace this opportunity and make sure that they get the best out of it, because it may come only once in a lifetime.

“I started an English club which has over 23 children from the refugee camp. The aim of the club is to help improve English skills in speaking and writing, because all of us have a French background”, says Patrick. Due to the language barrier, he feels he can help other students, as well as himself, to improve their English language. He encourages other young people in the camp to practice the English language, because it is the only language used at school.

Patrick’s mother appreciates the Impact Hope project for supporting Patrick with his education, and specifically taking him to a boarding school. “When children are in boarding schools they get time to concentrate on their education and also have extra-curricular activities that will help them in the future”, she says.

Patrick with his mother
Patrick with his mother and one of his siblings.


She further adds that the camp setting is not conducive for children in day schools. When they come back home in the evening after school, many children and young people often hang out with some of the children who have dropped out of school, and sometimes get exposed to drugs.

“I would like to appreciate the Impact Hope donors for selflessly taking care of us. May God bless them in all their endeavours”, concludes Patrick.


By Charity Beza Uwase, Communications Officer