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Rwanda's legacy inspires Parachute Band

MEDIA RELEASE: Rwanda's legacy inspires Parachute Band

After a trip to Rwanda to see World Vision's community development projects, the Parachute Band is keen to tell everyone Child Sponsorship works.

Parachute Band guitarist Si Moore says the 880 child sponsors who signed up at Parachute 07 have made a huge difference to the communities in World Vision's Tubehoneza Area Development Programme (ADP). Five schools now have solid, concrete water tanks, meaning standards of hygiene are improved and children can spend time on their lessons that they would once have spent collecting water.

"This scheme is just pure and simple genius," he says. "Instead of spending their days walking for hours to fetch water, they go to a school close by, get an education and they get to take water home at the end of the day. It's brilliant! The family gets better quality water, guaranteed year-round, and the kids get a future.

"Our couple of days in Rwanda were simply life-changing. I've travelled all over the world and been to some of the worst parts of Africa, yet the thing that impacted me most about Rwanda was not the tragic history, poverty, violence, or any of the other African scars that often claw at your heart when you leave this continent, but it was overwhelmingly the hope and light that World Vision is bringing to this place. Thanks to what World Vision is achieving with the help of regular Kiwis, Rwanda – and so many other places on this continent and around the world – has a hope and a future."

The Parachute Band will be talking about their trip to Rwanda on Saturday 26 at 3:30pm in the Fairtrade Cafe on the World Vision site.

Showing that Child Sponsorship works is World Vision's focus at Parachute 08, with new displays that show the life cycle of community development.

"We've also explained how an ADP works on the key areas of food, water, education and health. There are displays relating to each of these areas with hard facts that show you what a difference World Vision's work is making," says World Vision CEO Lisa Cescon.

A series of short films featuring New Zealanders who have seen World Vision's community development work for themselves will also be playing onsite.

"We really want people at Parachute 08 to get involved in the range of work World Vision does," says Miss Cescon. "We're holding an activism seminar on Sunday at 4pm at the Dome, where two of our top activists will be talking about some of the big issues that affect our work, such as the extreme lack of clean, safe water in some of the countries we work in, and what people in New Zealand can do about it."

Between the main stage and the Palladium, a giant plywood and canvas wall will gradually be covered in messages of justice over Parachute weekend – a collaborative work of art in progress. Known as the Justice Wall, it is a place for Parachute visitors to make a statement calling others to social action.

"We're asking people to create a stencil of their message – it could be something well-known, like 'make trade fair' or 'make poverty history', or something creative – and paint them onto the wall," says Miss Cescon. "And there will also be designer Fairtrade cotton T-shirts for sale, featuring messages of justice."

"We're also partnering with Hamilton coffee roaster Laroma to provide Fairtrade coffee through the Fairtrade Café at the World Vision site," she says.


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