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Genocide Survivor Speaks at San Marcos High

Rwandan Genocide Survivor Frederick Ndabaramiye Shares His Life’s Journey After a Brutal Mutilation


San Marcos High School and Kids Helping Kids were proud to host special guest Frederick Ndabaramiye, a Rwanda genocide survivor on Thursday, November 18. During a special lunch lecture, Mr. Ndabaramiye shared with the students at San Marcos his incredible life journey-a story of hope, triumph, and the charity of others.

In 1998, a fifteen-year-old Fredrick was captured by rebels in his small Rwandan village. The rebels tied his arms together, beat him, cut off his hands, and left him for dead. Hanging by a shred of hope, a determined Fredrick turned away a life of begging and gained his individuality back. He learned to live life without the use of his hands, slowly learning how to eat, shave, and get dressed as well as becoming a talented artist.

However, Fredrick’s story is not one about hate or revenge; it is about the kindness of others. “I can give testimony that there are good people in the world, and because of that,” he says, “I can forget what happened to me in 1998.”

Fredrick has dedicated his life to helping others affected by the genocide in Rwanda and has partnered with Jessica McCall to fund an orphanage for young Rwandans, the Ubumwe Community Center. Fredrick’s extraordinary journey has been featured by national news networks such as ABC as he continues to touch the hearts and minds of both the young and old.

This exceptional story reached the ears of San Marcos’s AP Economics classes, who each year participate in Kids Helping Kids, a student-run nonprofit charity organization. Every year KHK strives to raise over $100,000 for a local charity of their choice and continues the tradition of giving at San Marcos High School.

Over the past eight years, Kids Helping Kids has donated close to $500,000 to the Santa Barbara Unity Shoppe. On January 8, 2011, Kids Helping Kids will be hosting a benefit concert at the Granada Theatre featuring recording artists Mat Kearney and Tyrone Wells. More information about Kids Helping Kids can be found online.

Emma Campbell is a senior at San Marcos High School



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