Meet the Founder
"Never underestimate the valuable and important difference you make in every life you touch for the impact you make today has a powerful rippling effect on every tomorrow."
Sheer Love Rwanda was founded in December 2017 by Alexis Amani Simbayobewe. Amani is a remarkable young man who lived as a street child for five years due to the Genocide against Tutsis in 1994 after being separated from his family. Alexis was fortunate to be helped by some incredibly kind individuals and the children's center, Center for Champions, who were willing to allow him to get off the streets and into school. At the age of 18, he started his high school education at Rwamagana Leaders' School.
Changing the Narrative of Street Children
Through his hard work and determination, he was able to graduate from secondary school at the top of his class and received a scholarship to the university, Southern New Hampshire University through Kepler Kigali, where he obtained his bachelor’s degree in business. As a result, it is his mission to give back and help other children like himself realize their dreams through Sheer Love Rwanda. He has participated in the Watson Institute semester accelerator program to broaden his social entrepreneurship skills.
Meet James, Co-founder
Jimmy James Mugarura was born to a Rwandan family in the neighboring country Uganda. James’ parents fled Rwanda after the first genocide against the Tutsi in Rwanda in 1959. Having lost his father at an early age, life was hard. Education being expensive for his single mother who had 9 children to raise on her own, James dropped out of school in grade 9. While in grade 9, James was forced to drop out of school because his single mother could not afford his education for him.
However, at the end of the same year, he was lucky to be awarded a full scholarship as he was one of the best performers. This was the turning point in his life. It gave him the opportunity to perform in the National Exams and joined Cornerstone Leadership Academy Boys-Uganda.
While at Cornerstone Leadership Academy, James was mentored in Leadership, Character development, and Discipleship for two years. It was here he developed a passion to give back to the community. As the saying goes “to whom much is given, much is expected”.
After graduating, he moved to Rwanda joining Nyamata High school and later Kepler college for university. It was here at Kepler that James met with Alexis also known as Amani. Remembering very well, it was in 2017, when Amani shared with him the idea of visiting street kids and sharing Christmas with them, a year later, it gave birth to Sheer Love Rwanda (Rukundo Foundation by then).Later in 2020, James quit his two jobs as an administrator at Select Safaris East Africa and as an Economics teacher at Nyamata High School to fully focus on supporting the few children. He became the first full-time volunteer at Sheer Love Rwanda. James continues to fulfill his passion and purpose in serving at Sheer Love Rwanda.