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Podcast: Rwanda Genocide Survivor Shares Her Story

During the devastating Rwanda genocide of 1994, members of the Hutu ethnic majority in Rwanda unleashed slaughtered the Tutsi minority. Over 100 days, the violence claimed the lives of up to 800,000 people and an additional 2 million individuals were forced to flee their homeland. Among the survivors was Chantal Furaha, who now calls Denver home. 

Chantal Furaha’s journey began in Rwanda, where she was born and raised alongside her family, consisting of her mother, father, and 9 siblings. She was just 13 years old when hostility escalated. As tension grew closer to Chantal and her family, they decided to separate hoping that it would increase their chances of survival.

Chantal traveled through Burundi, Congo, and Tanzania, accompanied by other refugees who displayed generosity and assistance during such a desperate time. When Chantal arrived in Mozambique, she finally felt the sense of safety that she had wished for. She lived there for 8 years, and it was there she met her husband. 

During that time, Chantal patiently waited as she completed the necessary paperwork and underwent numerous interviews, all in the hopes of being granted the opportunity to immigrate. Finally, after waiting four more years, the day arrived when she was chosen to board an airplane bound for Denver.

Arriving in Denver at the age of 24, Chantal was eager to explore her new home. She received support, which enabled her to learn English and secure her first job. Despite the trauma she endured, Chantal has carved a new path in Denver, teaching at Temple Emanuel and speaking for the Coalition Against Global Genocide.

When Chantal speaks, her words portray hope and resilience. She believes that tomorrow is another life, and you must look forward.

Listen now on Apple Podcasts or Spotify.

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