I AM Because We Are

by Maria Russo


A joke between Anthony and I is that we’ll end up adopting a child during one of our regular visits to the project (which would be relatively difficult because Rwanda does not allow foreign adoptions :-). It’s insane how quickly you can love when you grow close to open-hearted people. I wish the whole of humanity understood how easy it is to feel and show love if we just let our hearts soften a bit.

I always preach about how much my life has changed since we launched the project in Rwanda. My heart is so full and it’s all thanks to the people we work with. They have taught me about love – the kind of love that requires sacrifice, suffering, hard work and patience. So often we see this play out on the farm where there is a tremendous amount of work to be done to keep the land fruitful. The women show up even if they are sick or injured to lend their support to the collective needs of the cooperative. They understand the importance of this project and what it will mean for themselves, their family and their community. They know it will provide food security, financial support and the freedom that goes along with generating a self-sustaining income. So they come together each day to help each other rise above the burdens and hardships and to move forward together towards a better life.

It is the African saying Ubuntu (I am because we are) in its truest form.

Today, how can you help someone you know who is going through a difficult time?



Maria Russo
Maria Russo


Maria is the co-founder and executive director of Humanity Unified International. Follow stories from the field on Instagram @humanityunified

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