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Our Story

Our mission is the empowerment of vulnerable Rwandan youth. RYP pursues that mission by working closely with the Rungano-Ndota Leadership Team, the young Rwandan leaders who envisioned the Initiative and operate it in Rwanda. So in a sense RYP’s mission is the  development and success of Rungano-Ndota. Ever since the idea was born in the Nyungwe Forest in 2016, we have collaborated towards their goal of building “a dream generation” for their community and country

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Rungano-Ndota Leaders with RYP Executive Director Todd Fry

RYP has evolved four main functions. We continue
expanding our global network of volunteers
and donors who make it all possible!

Coaching and Collaborating

Teaming up with RNI staff to share experience and work together

Building Community

Networking to engage new people in the effort


Helping donors commit so the effort is sustained

Annual Delegation to Rwanda

Bringing people to participate personally in the Rungano-Ndota community



The idea of Rungano-Ndota Initiative (RNI) is born out of conversations between Rwandans and Americans on a trip to Rwanda’s Nyungwe Forest.


Rwanda Youth Partnership (RYP) first comes together as “Rungano-Ndota Friends” based in Boston, USA, operating through a fiscal agent.

Rungano-Ndota's founding Leadership Team develops program plans and prepares to launch with local officials in Ruhango District.


Rungano-Ndota Initiative launches in Ruhango District in January. 60 youth are participating.  The Initiative is welcomed by Benimpuhwe Organisation, an established Rwandan NGO, that provides a legal home for RNI.

The Honey Cooperative is the first RNI business operating. The Cassava Cooperative develops and launches with support from its members and the  Friends. RNI cooperatives continue to form every year going forward.

“Friends” visit in February and July to support the effort and plan with the RNI team.  These visits for collaboration and coaching continue in the years ahead.


Rungano-Ndota now engages 100 youth.

In August, the "Friends" host an informal delegation of visitors to Rwanda and RNI.  On this visit, RYP and RNI team up to create the RNI Business Bootcamp, teaching business planning to RNI youth.

Recognizing the power and impact of Rungano-Ndota’s work, the Friends become “Rwanda Youth Partnership” (RYP) and begin to formalize the organization and activities.


Rungano-Ndota expands to 150 youth. Program activities continue to expand.


RYP hosts its first formal delegation with visitors from the USA and Uganda.


RYP registers as a legal corporation in Massachusetts and nationally.


RYP hosts a series of fundraising house parties in the Boston area.


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Rungano-Ndota expands to 200 youth – just in time for the Covid-19 pandemic!  RYP and RNI collaborate steadily throughout the crisis.

One major innovation during the pandemic is a new Business Relief Loan Fund to support youth’s personal businesses through the challenges of Covid.  RNI staff coach all 200 youth so they can apply for an interest-free microloan that is 50% grant due to the circumstances.  RYP donors respond to make it possible.

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In May RYP and RNI begin co-hosting “Virtual Visits to Rwanda” which engage almost 150 supporters by the end of the year.

In November, RNI and RYP launch an annual virtual event, “Umuhuro: 
Celebrating Partnership!” 


RYP receives 501c3 nonprofit status from the US Government and becomes an independent nonprofit organization.


Working groups develop between RNI staff and RYP volunteers, working on a range of projects, including program development, strategies for monitoring and evaluation, marketing materials, and business planning with new cooperatives.

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