Amazing, Incredible, Unforgettable… RWANDA!

I have to be honest… for some time now I have been sitting here at the computer staring at a blank screen – unsure of where to start, what to write and how to share our amazing experience in Rwanda with all of you. How do you begin to put it into words? when my mind cannot stop jumping from one life-changing memory to the next?

There are some experiences in life that truly change you from the inside out. And if we are honest with ourselves, we know these kinds of moments are very rare. They don’t come by everyday. But my recent trip to Rwanda, is undoubtably, one of those “I see the world with new eyes” kind of blessings. I will always hold close the incredible people I met, never forget their love for life and hold on to the high hope that we will meet again.

I hope you enjoy the slideshow below and are able to soak it all in… including our incredible welcome into the village of Nyabikiri by hundreds (and I truly mean HUNDREDS!) of school children cheering, waving and smiling, to meeting Florence and Yves (the children we have sponsored through Food for the Hungry for over four years), jumping rope and playing soccer and – of course – the two major projects we took on there… 1) Two water catchment systems that we built next to the school to store rain water and 2) the transformation of a broken pump-system water well into a traditional bucket and pulley system well to help immediately alleviate the very urgent need for clean water (Be sure to keep an eye at the end of the slideshow for the “before and after” photo using two water bottles)

THANK YOU to all of those who supported us and sent endless prayers throughout this entire journey. You never left our minds. Over the next several weeks, I will begin sharing the “backstory” of many photos you will see in the slideshow below (and some I didn’t include) – so I really hope you come back and visit me here…

It is funny, I am feeling a bit vulnerable when I think of you watching this slideshow… funny, but I think it is because I want you to love Rwanda, just like I do. I know it may be a lot to ask… but it is the naked truth. I want you to be moved by their smiles and let your heart be filled by them.

It was so indescribable to fly across the world to a place I have never been, but have felt connected to for years… and feel so incredibly loved the moment I arrived and want to immediately love right back! So, I will just say it… I truly hope that your heart for Rwanda grows as you watch this slideshow, that you are changed a bit too… and that you are inspired to always be a part of something bigger than yourself.


ps- it may take a minute to fully load, so please be patient… but I hope you just sit back and enjoy!

LindsaySeptember 12, 2010 - 6:45 pm


I am Kevin Von Qualen’s wife. He passed on your slide show about your trip to Rwanda. What a beautiful trip. What I LOVE about your photos is that they show the joyfullness and full of life kind of people that you met. So many pictures from the poorest and shattered parts of Africa show a lot of the devastation that these countries have endured. Although these pictures are important, so that the world knows what’s going on, I LOVE that your pictures have captured the hope, joyfullness and beautiful hearts of the people in Rwanda. I’m glad to hear that your trip was so wonderful. How awesome!


EricSeptember 6, 2010 - 2:08 pm

Humbling… Thanks for sharing your passion, Kate.

CathySeptember 6, 2010 - 2:54 am

I used to work with your brother several years ago and I came accross the link on Facebook. I don’t even have words to explain how wonderful you are for doing something so amazing. The pictures let all of us experience a piece of it with you. The children are so beautifull. You and your husband and everyone else that was there with you are truely wonderful for giving your heart to the familys in Rwanda!

Debra SteeleSeptember 3, 2010 - 9:46 pm

OK I was moved by the still photos but the slide show was a story in motion, the music and words behind the captured moments. You have a gift that you use well. Continue to inspire and serve. Bless you for stepping up and taking us all on your journey.

AmyAugust 27, 2010 - 2:43 pm

Hi Kate, I’ve been meaning to tell you how much I enjoyed your slide show and “sharing” your experience with you! I’m sure you touched a lot of lives on the other side of the world and that they miss your warm heart. I can totally picture you laughing and being silly with them and it makes me miss those times with you!!! 🙂 Luv ya! Amy

AlisonAugust 18, 2010 - 3:26 am

Amazing pictures Kate, the story is told so well through your lenses. Truly amazing, can’t wait to see you in person and hear the tales.


Ndagijimana PaulAugust 17, 2010 - 7:37 am

Hi Kate,

This is Paul. Thank you so much for sharing with people your recent experience here in Rwanda. I enjoyed looking at the beautiful photos you took. May God bless you

Paul (Fh Rwanda staff)

Ndagijimana PaulAugust 17, 2010 - 7:30 am

Hi Kate,

This is Paul (Food for the hungry staff you were with in Nyabikiri). I enjoyed looking at the photos you took and i want to thank you also for sharing your Rwanda experience with many other people. God bless you.


Nancy PAugust 16, 2010 - 12:48 am

Blessed are the peacemakers for they will be called the children of God.
Bless you from the Rwanda mission team who made the water system!

tanya geraldAugust 11, 2010 - 1:44 pm

kate- that was amazing. it brought me to tears. i am so proud of the work you are doing for the people of rwanda. thank you for sharing with us- and sharing yourself with them. cheers to you! cousin tanya

Cindy BakerAugust 11, 2010 - 12:38 pm

Hi Kate

I am Libby Higgins mom. She sent me the link. I think you got your wish to inspire and move people. You did.

Your photography is beautiful.

Cindy Baker

LauraAugust 10, 2010 - 10:52 pm

Kate, Bobby sent me the link to this slideshow. He loves, loves, loves your work! And your photography from your trip is incredibly beautiful, powerful and moving. Wow! An honor to be able to see this! And completely joyful!


BobbyAugust 10, 2010 - 2:41 am

I’m moved.Incedible, it took me a few minutes to fight back the emotion I felt from this so I could show it to Cindy. Kate what a moving experience.

LisaAugust 10, 2010 - 12:30 am

Hi Kate,
We don’t know each other but I found this link through my friend Laura Ball. Anyway this is AMAZING!! I don’t know what else to say- can’t wait to see and read more. Thank you so much for your work and sharing it with all of us!

jenna walkerAugust 10, 2010 - 12:23 am

kate – it is SO beautiful!!!!!!!!! The photos – the experience – everything. There is so much heart and love in these photographs. I’m simply amazed.

RonAugust 9, 2010 - 11:52 pm

I am sending this to EVERYONE I know! This is so great! You are the best. Thank you Kate

Georgia CampbellAugust 9, 2010 - 10:11 pm

Aloha from Hawai’i !! I would love to see the photos but apparently the library where I am using the computer to check email doesn’t let them come through. I’ll try again at another location. Love, Georgia

Cindy LeeAugust 9, 2010 - 2:07 pm

Wow! Unbelievably moving and beautiful! Just so hard to comprehend the situation you found with all those beautiful children and no safe/clean water. Thanks for sharing your amazing experience!

JesAugust 9, 2010 - 5:24 am

Wow. So very cool! It is so evident that God met you guys there. Thanks so much for lugging your camera along to share with us part of your experience there, Kate. Love it! Take me with you next time! I wanna bring back one of those munchkins!

marcieAugust 9, 2010 - 3:20 am

Incredible! Thank you for capturing the Rwanda trip so beautifully. The images share so much more than words can.

Heart StringsOctober 1, 2010 - 8:28 pm

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