Friends,

The past several months have been a whirlwind as Laura and the AWF production team returned to Rwanda in July and August 2011 to produce a new documentary on women entrepreneurs called MAMA RWANDA.  The film follows the lives of two Rwandan mothers as they balance family life with their calling to fight poverty by starting their own businesses.  Laura has recently been editing the trailer for the new film, so look for that in the coming weeks.

While in Rwanda, we welcomed on our trip celebrity portrait photographer Jeremy Cowart who shot a gorgeous photo essay entitled “Voices of Reconciliation.”  We paired at least a dozen reconciled perpetrators and survivors who posed for a portrait after writing a joint statement of hope to the world on a found object.

Never did we imagine when we returned that CNN.com would take interest in this project, but tomorrow, November 3rd, CNN will be publishing Jeremy’s photos on a brand new photo blog they’re launching this week.  We are so excited about this level of exposure and hope it will bring more attention to the As We Forgive Rwanda Initiative.  Many of the people in the portraits were participants in one of the workshops or presentations that our Rwandan team has done across the country.  In the last couple of years, we’ve actually reached well over 40,000 Rwandans with the movie and discussion program!  Stay tuned for the CNN link and the MAMA RWANDA trailer!

Below is a photo of our team with Bernard and Ernestine, a husband and wife team who are members of an As We Forgive Association of reconciled perpetrators and survivors building a new agricultural business together.  Although they come from opposite ethnic backgrounds, Bernard and Ernestine live out reconciliation in their marriage and in their community on a daily basis.