rYico relies largely on public donations to support Centre Marembo. Please help us to continue this vital work.

Despite the overwhelming number of young people in Rwanda, there was a real scarcity of services to support their needs. Centre Marembo (meaning ‘A Welcoming Meeting Place’) was founded by rYico in 2005 as a centre to help street children, including our first shelter for young boys, Umugongo House (meaning ‘mother’s back’ – where all Rwandese children feel most secure). Since then, it has become apparent that the secret to breaking the cycle of youth problems is to start with helping the women who are their mothers. We partner with other specialist organisations to help orphaned boys we encounter at the centre but our focus is on helping girls and young women who have been neglected or abused.

Centre Marembo runs several interlinked programmes that provide long-term, integrated support in education, health, and social services. Although each of these areas has a different impact, it is through this holistic approach that our programmes create the foundations for happiness, stability and future prosperity.

We provide three core areas of services:

Abatuje House Abatuje House (meaning ‘those who are at peace with themselves’) provides shelter, support and advocacy to girls and young women who have experienced abuse and violence at home or in the community.

Harakeye House Harakeye House (meaning ‘bringing from dark to light’) provides shelter, support and advocacy for our extreme cases. These are the girls and young women so badly affected by their trauma and abuse that their emotional state and behaviour would have a negative and destructive impact on the girls recovering in Abatuje House. Harakeye House gives these girls and women the intense counselling and support they need to get onto the road to rehabilitation until they can be transferred to join the others in Abatuje House.

Support and Education Providing access to information, education, social care and vocational training sets young women on the path out of poverty and to a better life where they can support and nurture their children.