History and Objective

Richard Rwanda-IMPUHWE was founded by Jessica Markowitz when she was eleven years old to support educational opportunities for girls in Rwanda in the rural village of Nyamata. Jessica’s original inspiration stemmed from a Rwandan man named Richard Kananga, a representative from the National Unity and Reconciliation Commission in Rwanda. Richard stayed with her family in the United States, and he recounted many sad tales about the horrendous 1994 genocide. With his inspiration, Richard’s Rwanda-IMPUHWE  is reaching out to 50 girls to help them achieve an education by supplying them with what they need in order to attend school.  Richard’s Rwanda IMPUHWE has established student chapters in several middle and high school across the Unites States working together to support Rwandan girls’ education. We provide financial support to low-income girls in the rural area of Nyamata to enable them to complete their primary education and 6 years of secondary school. Through the completion of their education, we hope to enhance their ability to earn income and become leaders in their community. 

Organizational Objectives:

  • Enable girls to finish primary school and attend 6 years of secondary school;
  • Reduce the gender discrimination that prevents girls from completing primary and secondary education.
  • Develop an on-going cross-cultural exchange program between students in Seattle, WA and primary and secondary girls in Rwanda.
  • Support the mentorship provided by girls from Fawe Girls School in the Rwandan capital Kigali, to low income girls in the rural district of Nyamata.
  • Collaborate with local NGOs in Rwanda to maintain the support for girls to complete their secondary education.
  • Students in Seattle will raise funds to support program activities through proposal writing and fund-raising activities.
  • Increase community awareness and understanding of the issues surrounding the Rwandan genocide by organizing speakers, remembrance events and community outreach activities.


  • Raised nearly $250,000 to support girls in Rwanda to finish their primary and secondary education;
  • Awarded a $25,000 matching grant from Paul Allen Foundation
  • Expansion from original chapter at Seattle Girls’ School to six additional high school chapters;
  • Developed a partnership with a local Rwandan girls’ school FAWE (Forum African Women Educationalist Girls School) to establish their own chapter of Richard’s Rwanda IMPUHWE to provide mentoring to low-income girls in the impoverished rural area of Namata; The program has officially been incorporated as part of a community service program for the FAWE School. (See below for more details).
  • World Of Children $15,000 grant awarded 2009