The Hovde Foundation, in partnership with Hope For Life Ministry, a Rwanda-based NGO, built the Swanson Hovde House just outside Kigali, Rwanda in spring 2011. It currently houses and cares for twenty-five boys, all formerly living on the streets of Kigali.
Our connection with Hope For Life Ministry happened through divine intervention (and Facebook!). During an internship in Rwanda in 2009, two recent college grads from Seattle, Megan Swanson and Hilliary Anderson, befriended several boys living on the streets of Kigali. Months later, comfortably settled into their lives in Seattle, they learned that their young friends were imprisoned, simply because they were a nuisance as street children. They returned to Rwanda, impassioned to rescue the boys from jail. The authorities agreed but law dictated that they have a house in which to care for them. So their desire for a short term solution turned into a long term commitment to the original 7 boys and later grew to 25.
As they approached the year point of providing for these boys on a shoestring budget, a string of connections via Facebook led them to cross paths with Eric Hovde, and a partnership was instantly formed. A few months later the boys moved into the newly built Swanson Hovde House.
Hope for Life Ministry focuses on holistic and long-term care that will allow for emotional, relational and spiritual healing to take place in each child. The boys in the program have their primary needs met, receive loving support, spiritual mentorship, and will be equipped to stay off the street through their opportunity to attend school and vocational training.
This Hovde House is called the Swanson Hovde House in honor of Hope For Life’s co-founder Megan Swanson and Hovde colleague Jason Swanson (no relation), who made a sizable grant to the project in conjunction with the Hovde Foundation.