A Letter to Family and Friends from A Partnership in Caring

 A Partnership in Caring Society volunteers Maria van Vonderen and Carolyn Rideout are returning to Rwanda in February, 2019. Please read the letter below. We appreciate your financial support for our ongoing projects.

October 30, 2018


Dear family and friends;


As many of you know, our members have been travelling to Rwanda since 2011.  We are a group of medical professionals from our hospital, St. Martha’s in Antigonish Nova Scotia. Our mission in Rwanda has changed over the last couple of years in that we are no longer working with the university hospital in Butare. Instead, we spend our time with the Benebikira Congregation, an African order of Roman Catholic, religious women. The sisters are operating schools and health care community clinics. At the clinics we provide ‘ad hoc’ financing for medical and social needs that arise when we are there. Some of these needs may be food, medication, and transportation for medical tests, and occasionally taxi fare for people to transport the bodies of relatives who have died in hospital or at the health clinic.


We also continue to spend time at ADAR orphanage, a residence for mentally and physically disabled children and adults. We provide ADAR with $3000 USD in operating monies each year. ADAR gets very little government funding in Rwanda, but is required to accept all new residents dropped off by the authorities.

We also provide tuition support for a dozen young people at the sisters’ boarding school at Save.

During our visit 2 years ago we met a 4 year old developmentally delayed boy, Fabrice, for whom we have been providing medical and other care. We also provide care for his mother and siblings.

As a society we have had to make some decisions around applying for charitable status in our own right. Much of our work in Rwanda is of an ‘ad hoc’ nature, meaning we respond to needs as we encounter them at the time, be they medical, educational or social. This makes it virtually impossible to have a single focus as required for charitable status with the Canada Revenue Agency. Also, we are a very small group of volunteers and we feel we do not have the staff required to fulfill the requirements of a society with charitable status.

In February 2019, two of our members, Maria Van Vonderen and Carolyn Rideout, will return to Rwanda for our 9th visit.

If you wish to support us, or continue to support us, you may send a cheque to:  A Partnership in Caring Society, c/o Dr. Carolyn Rideout PO Box 1652, Antigonish, NS B2G 2L8.  I also have a mail slot outside the doctor’s lounge at St. Martha’s hospital. You may also donate by visiting our website at www.apartnershipincaring.ca through Paypal via Visa or Mastercard. All funds collected are used for our work in Rwanda. We pay all our own expenses for travel and our work there.


Thank you for your consideration of our project.


Carolyn Rideout            Maria Van Vonderen