The Congregation of Franciscan Sisters Servants of the Cross, from Laski, Poland, was founded by blind mother Elisabeth Rosa Czacka in 1918.
The charism of the Congregation is service for physically blind, service for spiritually blind, means those who are far from God, and expiation for spiritual blindness of the world.
Mother Czacka wanted the blind to become useful members of the society and through acceptation of the cross of blindness they can be apostles among the sighted people.
We came to know about difficult situation of blind people in Rwanda from missionaries working in this country. In March of 2016 the Congregation sent here sr.Rafaela Nalecz. In this time there was no school for the blind at that time in Rwanda. After familiarising with the living situation of visually impaired in this country, we made a decision to open the school. The building plan of the Institute was approved by the Rwandan Government and construction was sponsored by the Polish Government.
The 28th of September 2009 was official opening day of the Educational Institute for the Blind Children in Kibeho .At that time we already had 37 learners. The curriculum is the same as in any other schools, but it is adapted to the needs of the blind.
Our purpose is to help the poorest children. The school and hostel fee that we take from families is symbolic. It costs 5000 FRW per trimester (equivalent of $ 6). In comparison with other local schools which charge 85000 FRW (equivalent of $ 100) our fee is very low.
The school year in Rwanda is divided into 3 trimesters. The longest holiday falls on period between November and January. During this time and in short periods between trimesters all the learners go home, apart from vacation time they stay here under our care.
The existence of the Institute depends on donations from individual sponsors and various foundations.
Kibeho belongs to the poorest region of Rwanda.It is also known as a place of apparition of Mary Mother of the Word – the only place in Africa officially accepted by Catholic Church.