Restoring children’s dignity
Since its inception by Marguerite Barankitse in 1993, Maison Shalom (House of Peace) has done all in its power to restore dignity to war or AIDS orphans, street children, young children and babies in prison (infants with their mothers), and the children of poverty-stricken parents. Since first taking charge of 25 war orphans in 1993, Maison Shalom has come to the aid of more than 20,000 orphans and other needy children.
As peace returns to Burundi, Maison Shalom has gradually changed its approach. We no longer wait for children in need to come to us: we go to them.
A community approach
Our almost 19 years of experience working with vulnerable children have taught us that the best way to help them efficiently and sustainably is to develop the community in which they live. In addition to children, other categories of people – mothers with nursing difficulties caused by malnutrition and poor sick people – turn to Maison Shalom for assistance.
The root of the problem is obviously the extreme poverty of the families. We have therefore adopted a community approach. We go to the families and help them develop to the point of self-sufficiency.
Towards sustainable human development
We have moved on, leaving the emergency phase behind us and turning completely towards sustainable human development while never, of course, overlooking those in urgent need of aid.
Maison Shalom is unique because of the holistic approach of all its activities. It monitors the children it helps even after their reintegration into the community, to ensure that everything’s going well. Its activities include all areas of integrated and sustainable development : health, education, culture, justice and income-generation. The focus is on agricultural and pastoral activities, the livelihood of over 90% of the population.
Involving the socio-economic, political and religious players
Maison Shalom works in all Burundi’s provinces and in its neighbouring countries (Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of the Congo). In addition to our day-to-day work, it is our duty to call on all those involved in socio-economic, political and religious life to make an effort to restore dignity to our brothers and sisters in Burundi and to put a smile back on their faces: we want to set a living example of integrated development.
With our unshakeable belief in the success of our mission, our determination and the friendship of our partners and friends who hold us dear and support us, we are convinced that our dream to see every Burundian lead a decent life will come true.