Meet Safi Life, the East African education nonprofit helping Rwandan women thrive!
MUKUNDWA Safi, a Rwandan genocide survivor, never thought she’d help to run her own nonprofit, albeit one named in her honor. As a child, she lost her entire family during the genocide against the Tutsi in Rwanda and was forced to find her way in life alone. Safi is the true definition of a thriver despite all odds. She put herself through secondary school, a university education, and even earned a Master’s Degree in Business.
In 2007, Devon Ogden traveled to Rwanda as part of her university thesis to offer artistic healing to genocide survivors. While in Rwanda Devon met Safi, became friends, and their paths intertwined. Together the two women founded Safi Life, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit registered in both the United States and Rwanda, whose mission is to educate, empower, and advance Rwandan women by developing female entrepreneurs.
Each year, Safi Life supports nearly 100 low-income students at their trade school NDASHOBOYE, which means “I Am Able”. Many of the women are young solo mothers who have nowhere else to turn. NDASHOBOYE teaches a trade that allows them to sell their sewn goods at the local market and support their families, avoiding alternatives like child marriage or human trafficking.
Over the last two years, Thrive Causemetics has sent makeup, skincare, and SPF sun protection to the Safi Life school. Not only did the students enjoy the process of putting on the makeup, some for the very first time, but they demonstrated the power of relationship that the beauty industry provides. Our Filtered Effects™️ Protecting Primer SPF 37, which was inspired by a need for sun protection from our longtime LA-based Giving Partner Beauty 2 the Streetz, has now made a difference all the way in Kigali, Rwanda. This is all due to our virtuous circle, fueled by YOU, our Thrive Causemetics family. With the virtuous circle, we are able to connect products, people, and ultimately missions all around the world. We can’t wait to see what you help us achieve next!
“This is what we mean when we say ‘Bigger Than Beauty’. It’s not about the final ‘result’ or ‘look’, it’s about the connection and confidence that beauty products are a vehicle for. Thank you, Safi Life, for allowing us to be a part of your mission.” - Karissa Bodnar, Thrive Causemetics Founder + CEO