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Intended Consequences began as a  multimedia project in 2007 by photojournalist Jonathan Torgovnik with the story of Odette, the first of many courageous mothers who shared their harrowing  experiences of the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi in Rwanda. At the end of her interview, Odette quietly revealed that she gave birth to a baby boy as a result of genocidal rape. Over 30 women with children born of rape participated in the initial project. With the help of our incredible supporters, the Intended Consequences project grew into the nonprofit Foundation Rwanda, a movement that has helped nearly 1700 women and their offspring. Our goal is to fulfill the wishes of mothers who survived horrific trauma against all odds. Foundation Rwanda sponsors schooling for Odette’s son and more than 800 second-generation survivors born from rape, as well as holistic support programs that were suggested by the Foundation Rwanda families themselves.

Disclosure continues to shed light on the underreported issue of rape used as a weapon of war, and its consequences: the children born of rape in conflict areas and the complex and deep trauma they live with for generations. The following testimonies embody stories of hope, forgiveness, fragility, and a strong undertone of the lingering struggles associated with severe trauma and effects of genocide. All testimonies, given in 2019, were translated from Kinyarwanda to English by Samuel Munderere and have been edited for brevity and clarity.

This project was supported by the Pulitzer Center for Crisis Reporting.

Read the stories >