AERG initially creates families from members based on the secondary school or university they attend, after which the newly-formed family meet to democratically elect a willing father and mother from among their ranks. Though they don’t all live together, they do help each other out financially and attempt to pool their resources.
In the University of Rwanda’s College of Education alone there are 21 such families, with hundreds more being set up across the country.
“(We) Rwandans, we used to have big families but during the genocide many people were killed,” says Daniel Tuyizere, AERG’s second vice coordinator at the University of Rwanda.
“To fight against that, we have to build artificial families so that we can go back to the way we were,” he adds. “That’s why you can find a father with 25 children — it’s because of that, it’s because of history.”