Monday, April 18, 2011

Packing List for Rwanda 2011

  • Sweatshirt or light jacket for cool evenings

  • Ladies:

    • 2 Pants / capris — cotton, lightweight twill

      • Capris need to be LONGER

      • Pants / capris should not be tight in the rear or thigh regions.

    • 2 casual shirts – Shirts that “wick” are recommended

      • No shirts with spaghetti straps

    • 2-3 dresses / skirt outfits

      • If your dresses are sleeveless, bring a sweater to cover up

      • Dresses / skirts need to be knee-length or longer

    • 2 bras

    • 1 sports bra

    • Hint: Dark colors hide dirt better!

    • NO shorts

    • Do NOT bring ONE outfit per day!

  • Guys:

    • 1 pair of shorts

    • 2 pairs of khaki pants (NOT jeans)

    • 2-3 casual shirts (1 of which needs to have a collar; Again, shirts that “wick” are recommended)

      • Shirts should NOT have logos, skeletons, crossbones, etc. on them.

    • 1 Tie

    • NO sleeveless tops

    • Do NOT bring 1 outfit per day!

  • 1-2 changes of work outfits

    • Work outfit = Pants (Jeans / Khakis / Capris) + Short-sleeved t-shirt + closed toed shoes

  • 7 pairs of underwear

  • 7 pairs of socks

  • Pajamas (Not skimpy, see-through, etc. Ladies: This cannot be shorts and spaghetti tops. It must be pants + a t-shirt).

    • Pajamas CANNOT be worn for lounging or evening processing / devotions.

  • 1 swimsuit (Guys: Trunks; Girls: 1-piece)

  • 2- 3 pairs of shoes

    • 1 pair of closed toed shoes (Guys: These should double as your church shoes)

    • 1 pair of sturdy sandals (Close-toed, comfortable for walking; Ladies: These should also double as your church shoes)

    • 1 pair of flips flops / shower shoes

    • Hint: Make sure your shoes are BROKEN in BEFORE the trip.

  • Soap and toiletries

    • Shampoo

    • Soap

    • Toothbrush / toothpaste

    • Comb / brush

    • Feminine products

      • Even if you're not expecting to have to deal with this while in Rwanda, bring feminine products anyway as they may be difficult to find and traveling has a funny way of altering your cycle.

  • Hand-towel, towel, washcloth, and beach towel

    • Hint: Camping towels save space and dry fast!

  • Extra glasses / contacts

  • Bible

  • Notebook and pen, journal

  • Sunglasses with UV protection

  • Flashlight / Headlight + extra batteries

  • Alarm clock (battery/wind-up)

  • Transformer for 220 current and Adapter Plug (only if you need to recharge a camera)

  • Canteen or water bottle

    • Water will be filtered and bottled. However, we will likely be pouring water from 5 L containers into individual water bottles. This water bottle will also be handy for the plane.

  • Bandanna

  • Visor or hat

  • Insect repellent and after-bite

  • Sun screen and sunburn relief product - highest SPF# possible

  • Tylenol, Band-Aids, immodium, pepto bismol, ace wrap, Neosporin, Malaria meds, Cipro

    • All medications (prescription and over the counter) MUST be in their original bottles / packages

      • Get travel size bottles! You'll only be gone for 2 weeks!

  • Hand sanitizer

  • Laundry detergent + clothesline

    • Buy the “one load” packets in the travel section so that you can do laundry in a sink

  • Back pack (This will be your carry-on)

  • Photo portfolio

    • To help you effectively communicate about your family and background to the Rwandans you meet, you'll prepare a photo portfolio. Rwanda is a land of community so they will love to see your pictures of your family. Bring select shots of your home, school, church, family, friends, and of your self involved in various activities you enjoy. Be cautious not have pictures of ’things’ that will show the material riches of your lifestyle. People and places are the best shots. Put your photo portfolio together in a small, soft-covered album, and bring it to the May 1 meeting, prepared to share!

  • Camera (Optional) + batteries / charger

    • Note: Camera use may be restricted. The indiscriminate photographing of ministry activities can be offensive to nationals. Team members will be expected to abide by any rules established by I-Teams staff.

    • Jen & Doug will have their camera. Pictures will be made available to anyone who wants them after the trip.

  • Small gifts for giving

    • Giving and receiving gifts can be an important part of building new relationships in other cultures. You should be prepared to give one or two small gifts to those you build a special relationship with. Appropriate gifts include such things as mugs, calendars, key chains, rubber bracelets, post cards of your home area, etc. Something simple that will be a reminder of you and where you came from.

  • Secret Pal NOTES for Sunday, June 12 – Thursday, June 23

  • Passport + 2 copies

    • Jen will have a copy of your passport but you should also put one in your backpack and one in your suitcase.

  • Passport “wallet”

    • You'll need to have your passport with you at ALL times

    • This should be a “pouch” that you can wear underneath your clothes that will contain your passport & money

  • Drivers License / State ID Card

  • Yellow Card

  • Notarized letter granting you permission to travel to Rwanda without your parents (We'll talk more about this at the May 1 meeting)

  • Money

    • NOTE: You must follow these 'rules' when bringing cash to Rwanda. To receive the best rates or even ability to exchange, bills should be newer then the year 2003 and they must be unmarked in every way (no pen ink marks, banks stamps, rips, etc.) You will most likely need to notify your local bank a week or more in advance as to your requirements. The rate of exchange is best for $50 and $100 denominations. Denominations lower than $50 will receive a lower exchange rate.

    • Do NOT bring a ton of money. Remember: Everything is covered in our budget EXCEPT souvenirs and snack foods, which you may or may not have the opportunity to purchase.

    • To give you an idea of how much money you might want to bring, here are some typical prices for items you might want to purchase:

      • Rwandan coffee (great dark roast - world famous) - $5

      • Award winning tea - $1.50

      • Baskets - $4

      • Wooden Carvings - $5 and up

      • Woven placemats - $4

      • Jewelry - $1.5 and up

      • Purses - $5 and up

      • T-shirts - thinking about $10 and up

  • Food for the plane

      • Food that's hearty, travels well, and does not melt

      • "Emergency food supply" in case you need it between meals, when food is not readily accessible. Nature's Valley granola bars work great for this, as do Peanut Butter crackers.

      • Something to keep your digestive system working well, as travel can sometimes make you constipated.

  • Books / Magazines / Travel games for the plane

  • Extra duffel for the items we'll be bringing to Rwanda

    • Bring this to our logistical meeting in May so that we can fill it with soccer balls, a parachute, socks, underwear, soccer cleats, and backpacks.

    • For the return trip home, this bag should FIT inside your checked luggage.


Packing Guidelines


You must fit ALL your personal luggage into your carry-on and ONE small checked bag (small suitcase, duffel bag, or camping backpack. Do NOT use the largest suitcase your family owns for this trip!). Whatever you pack you'll be expected to carry. Your bag should NOT be anywhere close to 50 lbs. You will also want to leave room in your bag to be able to bring home souvenirs.


In your carry-on, include 1 change of clothing (which is part of the # of clothes mentioned above, not in addition to); Toiletries including feminine products; Medications; Extra glasses / contacts; Water bottle; Bible; Journal / Pen; And anything you want to use on the plane (travel games, books, etc.)


Do NOT plan on leaving behind all your dirty work clothes, shoes, suitcases, etc. This would be considered insulting in the Rwandan culture.


Things to Leave at Home


  • Stereos, portable TV's etc.

    • IPODs may be used on the plane but will NOT be used at anytime in Rwanda. If an adult leader sees you using an IPOD while in Rwanda, they will take it away and you will NOT receive it until we return home to Faith (Not even for the plane ride home.)

  • Jewelry other than your watch a ring that never comes off. You may wear studs, but no other earrings. All necklaces should be left at home.

  • Make-up – It will smear in a hot climate and you will simply not have a lot of time to get ready in the morning.

  • Cell phones

  • Laptops

  • Anything NOT on this list.

    • If it's not on this list, you don't need it & you're just wasting space & weight.

    • In Rwanda, you will NOT need

      • A sleeping bag

      • Camping pad

      • Mosquito net

      • Rain gear (We're going during the dry season)

Rummage Sale Shifts

Just a reminder that the Rummage Sale is FAST approaching!

At the meeting on Saturday, we asked students to sign up for the three set-up shifts that they and YOU will be working. Below is the schedule. Please note: A few students did NOT sign up for three shifts. If this pertains to you, please e-mail me and let me know the third shift that your family will be working. Once again, I cannot emphasize how important parental help will be for the rummage sale! Know that we are counting on you to make the sale a success!

Tuesday, April 26, 6-9 pm: Janss, Warner, Dibadj, Gorz, P. Heidi, Frappolli
Wednesday, April 27, 6-9 pm: Janss, Warner, Dibajd, Gorz, P. Heidi, Coleman
Thursday, April 28, 6-9 pm: Dibadj, Gorz, P. Heidi, Coleman, Frappolli
Friday, April 29, 6-9 pm: Janss, Warner, P. Heidi, Frappolli

Additionally, know that we are counting on both YOU and your child to serve during the Rummage Sale itself on Saturday, April 30 from 7 am - 6 pm. We know that this will be a LONG day, but you are working to reduce your final Rwanda payment. Please wear a FLY t-shirt (borrow one from you child if you need to!). Lunch will be provided during the rummage sale.

Thanks so much for all your help!

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Sign-Up for Rummage Sale Shifts!

Just a reminder: Rwanda team members AND parents are expected to work three out of four of the following shifts to set-up for FLY's Rummage Sale:
Tuesday, April 26, 6-9 pm
Wednesday, April 27, 6-9 pm
Thursday, April 28, 6-9 pm
Friday, April 29, 6-9 pm.
Students will be signing both themselves AND their parents up for the three shifts they plan on working at the Rwanda Team Meeting on April 16.

Team members AND parents are also expected to work the Rummage Sale ALL day, Saturday, April 30, from 7 am - 6 pm. Lunch will be served.

The Rummage Sale has the potential to raise a LOT of money for our Mission Trip to Rwanda. However, to make it a success, many hands are needed!

Friday, April 15, 2011

Our host, Jen Kamari, reflects about remembering the Genocide

Today is a holiday here. The day that ends the week of mourning for the genocide. Seventeen years have come and gone and Rwanda continues to strive on every level to move forward. I like the motto for this year - 'Upholding the truth, Preserving our dignity'. Every Rwandan we know has been changed for life because of the genocide. On Sunday we were taught on the Attribute of God - God is Just. Sparked lots of discussion in the Monday night Bible study. I walked away from the study very blessed to know that group of 22 people is striving to live like Christ and to believe in a God that is Just. Not easy for me, let alone someone who has witnessed some horrific things.
Pray for the remaining 100 days of genocide. Each day people in this country remember where they were during that time. May God prevail!

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Help Us Spread the Word!

Grab your friends and come to

Faith's Rummage Sale on

Saturday, April 30

from 8 am - 3 pm at

41 N. Park Blvd. Glen Ellyn.


Great deals on furniture, kitchen items, small appliances, electronics, books, toys, clothing, sports equipment, shoes, and more plus a Clothing Bag Sale from 2-3 pm: Get a bag of clothes for just $2!


All proceeds will benefit Faith Lutheran Youth's (FLY's) Mission Trip to Rwanda.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Of Beetles and Angels

At our next team meeting on Saturday, April 16 from 10 am - Noon, the focus of our discussion will be the book, "Of Beetles and Angels," which tells the story of one refugee's journey from Ethiopia to Wheaton. Our discussion about this book will help prepare us for our ministry to refugees in Rwanda.

Parents: A great way for you to help prepare your child for the experience they are about to have is to read and discuss this book with them at home!

Monday, April 4, 2011

Walter & Sandy Becky

This Wednesday, April 6, Faith members Walter & Sandy Becky will be joining FLY for our series, "Expressions of Faith." During this, they'll be sharing part of their faith story along with stories from their trip to Rwanda & Uganda last year. Join us from 7:45 pm (or after Lenten worship) until 8:30 pm in the Youth Room.