Emily Ronsberg's Rwanda page
I'm so glad you could join me on this grand adventure! :)
I am asking for your support with my call to serve as a volunteer for the ELCA’s Young Adults in Global Mission (YAGM) program.
I have accepted the opportunity to serve as a YAGM volunteer in Rwanda starting in August. I will be one of more than 70 young adults serving on behalf of the ELCA in 9 different country programs around the world, and I am so excited! I am looking forward to seeing how this year will upend and transform my understanding of God's work in the world, and my understanding of my own call to ministry in that.
As part of accepting this call, I am asked to raise at least $5,000. Please help me reach my goal by supporting my fundraising efforts with a donation today. Through your donation, you join me on this journey as I grow in my own faith and walk in partnership with our global companions.
Thank you for joining me and for your support – every gift truly matters! All financial gifts and prayers of support are greatly appreciated :)
1. Where is Rwanda?
Rwanda is a country in Central Eastern Africa, roughly the size of Maryland, and is home to about 11 million people. Located almost directly on the equator, it is known as the "Land of a Thousand Hills," and is home to 40% of Africa's mammals (402 known species) as well as thousands of bird and plant species. Rwanda also contains the world's largest population of mountain gorillas. While they are critically endangered, they are slowly rebounding due to intense government and NGO conservation efforts. Another fun fact about Rwanda is that it has one of the only female-majority parliaments in the world!
2. Why are you going?
This year is an opportunity to be pushed completely out of my comfort zone, to learn from and be transformed by a community full of loving and generous people, and to seek God in new ways. I hope to take the knowledge, stories, and experiences I gather throughout the year back to you, dear friends, and to our communities and churches so that together we might learn from and be encouraged by our friends and neighbors across the world.
3. What will you be doing, and how long will you be there?
Good question! I will be attending a 10 day orientation in Chicago starting August 13th, and then will leave for Rwanda with my cohort of 6 other Rwanda YAGMs on August 21st and will remain there for the next 11 months, returning home sometime in July of 2020.
As to what I'll be doing, the answer is that I don't know quite yet :) I will find out sometime mid-July, and this allows the YAGM program to listen to our Rwandan companions and see how we can best serve alongside them as needs may change from year to year. Possible placements include supporting women's economic development, teaching opportunities such as in English or environmental studies, or otherwise supporting the ministries of the Lutheran Church of Rwanda.
Maybe the most important part of this year is actually what we won't be doing. We won't be imposing our own cultural values and beliefs on our Rwandan companions, but instead will be walking alongside them and learning from their culture and way of life. We won't be starting any projects on our own, but will instead be serving faithfully in whatever capacity our communities ask us to. Throughout the year, we will seek to acknowledge, repent of, and bear fruit worthy of repentance for the sins of colonialism and the harm done in the name of Christianity, with impacts felt both historically and in the present day.
About Young Adults in Global Mission
The ELCA’s Young Adults in Global Mission program provides young adults, ages 21-29, the opportunity to grow in their faith and work in partnership with our global companions. Young adults in the program serve in churches, schools and social service ministries. Currently the program is engaged in work in Argentina/Uruguay, Australia, Central Europe, Jerusalem/West Bank, Madagascar, Mexico, Rwanda, Senegal, and the United Kingdom.
The total cost for one young adult in the program is $15,000. Each young adult is tasked with raising a minimum of $5,000 to help support their year of service. The ELCA commits to raising the additional $10,000 per volunteer through generous congregations and donors. If more than $5,000 in gifts is received, the additional funds will be help to support other young adult volunteers and ensure that there is a sustainable source of revenue for future the Young Adults in Global Mission program.
If you think this page contains objectionable content, please inform the System Administrator.