These photos are of some of the women in leadership positions in the 7 widows groups in Rubingo. Together, with the other members, and the HIV positive group, they number over 200. We met with them to discuss their current needs. School fees always top the list, but this year the need for land to cultivate was just as pressing for them. For the last several years land has been rented for them, but the leases run out in 2014, and even with their best efforts to save money, they just don't have what it takes. They have micro-credit systems running within each group, and that has produced some of what they need, but not enough. They told us that in order to feed their families, they need a minimum of 2 plots, each of which measures 20 yards by 60 yards. The rent for 2 plots for a year is $70. Such a small amount in Canadian terms. ACTS has some of what they need for the coming year, but its budget for things like renting land has been greatly reduced. Ideally each woman would have 4 plots, which would allow them to grow enough to sell as well as to feed their families, and so to save enough to pay for rent for the next year. But in the meantime, 2 plots will at least feed them and their families. If any of you out there are looking for a Christmas gift of a different sort, and would like to support one of these widows in the process, please let me know, by emailing me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I will be making up special cards which will include a photo of one or more of these women, and which can be given to the person you have in mind. If the cheque is made out to ACTS, your donation will be tax-receiptable. I told these women I would do what I could to help them, and I will. They are such beautiful women, strong and determined - the same group I first met with almost 7 years ago, before I started the Kitambaa Sewing Project - so they hold a very special place in my heart.