Tuesday, 8 December 2009

A brand new sewing machine for your patch:

Sewing machines, provided by donations made to Mission International have found their way to help refugee returnees in Burundi.   Families will now have the opportunity to break out of poverty as their income generating projects make a start.

The beautiful Palm Olive trees in the background may hide the picture of great need that is felt by so many in Burundi at present.   Many people have left now redundant and closing refugee camps in Tanzania and DR Congo to return home to start a new life.   For many it means the daily grind of trying to survive will continue indefinately but with a greater risk in their new surroundings.

Nitunga Francois and Theo Mbazumutima  two of the Rema Ministries personnel deliver a sewing machine to this lady, her opportunities for the future have now changed and have come into focus making it possible for her to use her tailoring skills to provide for hrself and her children.

Friday, 14 August 2009

Rema Strategic Support - Bee Project:

Bee project set to produce good income:
Theodore Mbazumutima, one of the Rema Ministries team in Burundi received a 'Strategic Support' grant from Mission International and has wasted no time in setting up a small income generating project for himself and his family.

Purpose of the 'Strategic Support' grant scheme:
Rema Ministries, a local NGO in Burundi is key to the success of many projects now in place for the benefit of refugee returnees now on their way back to Burundi from refugee camps in DR Congo and Tanzania. The team are committed to improving the lot of their people who have been in exile for many years. The team runs support projects like HIV/AIDS training and support, health centres and reconciliation seminars and training to help in the repatriation process. Since Rema is a non-profit organisation, and their staff have limited income, it is important to find ways of helping them to generate income in order that they can continue to fulfil their calling to help Burundi's returning people.
Mission International has agreed to help Rema by providing small one-off grants of £1000 to team members in order that they can set up an income generating project for themselves and their families so that the team members can focus on the work that they are called to do. Each grant/small project can provide up to 25% of the required income of a Rema team member's family.
Above a traditional bee hive is located in the branches of a tree. This system, while a long term honey producing method is limited in its success. Bees leave the hive when the rains come since the hive is not water proof.

The more modern hives are being introduced and will become very productive when the project has established itself.

Various parts of the country have lots of flowering plants for food production, the bees benefit the pollination of the fruits which form a major part of the local economy.

To donate to the 'Rema Strategic Support' fund please use the options on the right hand column of this page.

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Saturday, 15 November 2008

Family resourced by Mission International sponsorship:

Mr Frederic Harerimana and his family start a business:
One of the REMA team and his family, now living in Bujumbura, Burundi have received a grant from Mission International to start a small income generating business. Frederic Harerimana was for years a refugee from Burundi living in camps in some of Burundi's neighbouring countries, eventually making his way to Nairobi, Kenya. It was there in the slums of Nairobi, that the REMA team began to dream of how they could return their beloved homeland and serve their people. The commitment of this team has been inspiring, however resources are so limited in Burundi, now the poorest country in the world.
Mission International is now partnering with REMA Ministries to find ways in which a strategic plan can be brought together to resource the REMA team in order that they are not forced out of their crucial ministry to find secular jobs to feed their families. The grant to Frederic and his family is one of the first of what we hope will be many, thus making it possible for Burundi's refugee community to be supported and served in the long term.

Frederic and his family:
Frederic stands with his son in the shop amongst the stock purchased in a bid to begin the new business

If you would like to sponsor a REMA Team member on a regular basis please click here:

To Gift Aid your giving please click here:

If you would like to make a one-off donation to the REMA Team please click here:

Sunday, 26 October 2008

Rema Team 'uncovered'.

Team from Top Left clockwise:
  • Gervais
  • Feston
  • Felibien (Director)
  • Theodore
  • Francois (Founder)
  • Frederic
  • Spes
  • Michelline (In the centre)

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Monday, 1 September 2008

Quality time spent thinking?

Brainstorming session a success!
The Rema team spent two days with Mission International director, Hugh Henderson considering how both organisations can work more closely in partnership in the future. Rema is a strategic organisation in Burundi, their involvement in mission and evangelism, discipleship training, HIV/AIDS and health care, youth work as well as reconciliation and peace building allows them to touch a wide range of individuals in a variety of communities across the nation. Poverty is a subject which touches everyone in Burundi, every strata of society is affected in many different ways. For some it is the annoyance of beggars requiring money and for others it is the continual quest for the fundamentals which support life itself. The group brainstormed their thoughts on the subject which was a great learning experience and time, so often given to cope with the busyness of life and work, was set aside to think.

The Rema Centre library is the venue for the brainstorming sessions.

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Tuesday, 8 July 2008

Rema's Vision:

Where to now?
Any kind of civil unrest disturbs a country's future vision and interrupts life in such a way that hope for the future declines in the hearts of the people. Burundi's period of war and genocide was no exception, in fact the 13 year long war has brought the whole country to its knees and has left the nation dangling on the bottom of the world's list of poor countries. Rema Ministries has set about the huge task, under God's guidance, of bringing a new hope and a new vision to Burundi. Some strategic moves including wise land purchases have allowed this crucial ministry, with limited resources, to place itself in a strong position for the future. With some helpful investment Rema can now begin to establish the dream which has motivated them for a long time. The dream is to establish a resource which will benefit the whole nation and make the church's influence on nation more effective in the long term.

A new start is required:
Francois Nitunga, Rema's founder took us to see a plot of land on the shores of Lake Tanganyika which has been purchased by Rema Ministries where it is hoped that a resource centre can be built to accommodate a wide range of support mechanisms and projects for the benefit of the whole nation. This large site is situated in a site of real natural beauty with the lake on one side and a backdrop of mountains on the other. The site's natural beauty however is only the icing on the cake in terms of the vision for this haven. The Church in Burundi has lost many of its teachers and thinkers and needs to be established once again. Francois wishes to see this site become a busy centre for church ministry and support of the poor. Refugees are returning to Burundi after many years in neighbouring Uganda, Kenya, Tanzania and DR Congo. People are in great spiritual and physical need. Churches are led by untrained pastors and ministers and many returning refugees are suffering from HIV/Aids and other diseases as well as being in conflict with those who have inhabited their land and homes. Rema wishes to attend to such issues and will require some support and investment if this is to be the case.

The team:
The Rema team are dedicated to the work and have used their time of exile to become educated and trained in a variety of strategic areas in order that they can best deal with the issues that face their nation. Conflict resolution, medical training and theology to name a few areas have made this multi talented team ready for the job ahead. Currently the team rents a house in Bujumbura where they have an office and a library and some simple accommodation for visitors, but their dream is some much bigger.

To find out more about Rema, visit the Rema UK website.

You can help!

Your help is key to the future development of this ministry. Whether in the development of their medical outreach and care work, conflict resolution and mediation or in the development of a theology training facility or with building and planning or simply the inevitable stream of finance required to make it all possible, then we need to hear from you. Rema is ready when you are, please get in touch with us on mail@mission-international.org

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Friday, 6 June 2008

Rema reaches the poorest:

Rema - created by the people for the people:

Rema Ministries was started by a Burundian refugee, Francois Nitunga, having been displaced by the civil unrest in his country, relocating in Nairobi, Kenya and using that at his base to access the various refugee camps in the neighbouring countries to Burundi. The team now growing in skilled and experienced personnel continues to work as they endeavour, at a heavy cost, to repatriate to their beloved country where they can better attend to the needs of the returning refugees. It is rare to see such a committed and energetic group of people serving in such difficult circumstances, our help and support will allow them to continue to develop this essential ministry and maintain their families at the same time.

Francois Nitunga a visionary prepared to give all to serve God and his beloved Burundi, he is also a Missioner with the Church Army.

Rema's Purpose:
Rema is a multi-faceted ministry. During the time of unrest in Burundi the team were in exile in Kenya where they trained and began to serve their people who languished in refugee camps in Uganda, Tanzania and Kenya. During this period Rema built relationships with many and made strides to prepare the refugees for their eventual return to their homeland. At the same time the civil unrest in Burundi had disrupted those who had remained in the country, leaving them in a place where they needed help to accept the eventual return of the refugees. Rema was involved in the reconciliation process here as well.

Returning refugees are poor but glad to be back in their own country. Much support is required if this nation is to rebuild itself once again.

At the same time the scourge of Africa, HIV/AIDS was increasing and taking its toll on the population, Rema began to develop a training and education arm to support the victims of HIV/AIDS as well as find income generating projects to help support those who were no longer able to help themselves, in particular the most vulnerable, women and children.

This ministry is certainly an important one which is fully committed to seeing the nation rebuilt once again. Currently however the Rema team themselves are in need of help - read on....

Rema's study library for ministers and pastors is located in the capital Bujumbura. This centre is well used but is run on a shoe string financially. The centre has hosted Mission International teams.

Currently due to the severe economic situation in Burundi, now deemed to be the world's poorest country, Rema team members are finding it so difficult to survive and fulfil their calling and ministry to their people. Mission International has agreed to help raise whatever support we can in order that each team member can set up a small income generating business to support their families, thus allowing them to continue to serve the needy. If you would like to consider supporting one of the team then please contact us on mail@mission-international and we will email you the appropriate support forms.

One of Rema's many projects has been to build this medical centre in Nyembuye where lots of refugees are retuning to build new lives. There is need for a maternity unit since those who have complications in childbirth are stretchered for two days to the nearest town and often die en-route.

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