Monday 16 September 2019

Tommy records charity single to give a little bit to victims of Rwanda genocide

Singer and Bóthar ambassador Tommy Fleming singing with high school students. Photo: Sean Curtin
Singer and Bóthar ambassador Tommy Fleming singing with high school students. Photo: Sean Curtin
Aoife Kelly

Aoife Kelly

Singer Tommy Fleming has joined teenagers in Rwanda for a very special Christmas charity single.

The Sligo singer recorded Supertramp's 1977 hit 'Give A Little Bit' with students from Rwamagana High School to raise vital funds for Irish charity Bóthar's work with genocide widows.

"I've had many, many great moments in the music industry but recording with these kids was one of the very best. They have an incredible sense of positivity, despite having so little," said Fleming.

Next year will be the 25th anniversary of the Rwandan genocide, which saw up to one million people slaughtered over the course of 90 days from April 7, 1994.

Bóthar supports the Rwandan government's 'One Cow Per Family' programme by gifting in-calf Irish dairy heifers and other food-producing and income-producing animals to local families.

Fleming, who took time out from recording his new album, 'Voice of Hope II', to travel to Rwanda, met families living with the legacy of genocide and saw the positive impact Bóthar's work has had on their lives. "One woman had five of her nine children and her husband killed in the genocide. You would wonder how someone could go on after that and when we arrived the smiles and tears just flowed," he said.

Lending his voice: Singer Tommy Fleming in Rwanda with a woman who was helped by Bóthar. Photo: Sean Curtin
Lending his voice: Singer Tommy Fleming in Rwanda with a woman who was helped by Bóthar. Photo: Sean Curtin

"The cow she got from Bóthar gave her some bit of hope. She was able to raise what was left of her family, and subsequently her grandchildren, from this single cow as every year since she got that cow, Bóthar was back to put the cow back in-calf. The gift kept going on and on and is still giving to her today."

Learn more about the journey on Independent.ie, and 'Give A Little Bit' can be downloaded from www.bothar.ie

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