Our goodwill ambassadors are people who know us, can describe and vouch for our work. They are people who have visited and worked with us.
Ambassador Belgium Ambassador Sweden
Nadège Van Mechelen Ulf Sandström
+ 32 (0)478 28 49 24 + 46 (0)704 88 84 18
+ 46 (0)704 91 66 54
Nadège Van Mechelen, Belgium
Nadège’s story (Belgian volunteer)
Specialist in socio-cultural activities and lifelong education
« I met Muna during an internship with Amnesty International at the end of my studies. He told me about BVES and its work with child soldiers… I immediately thought that his work was spectacular and so important within the DRC. After my studies, we started up a project together and that’s how I found myself in Bukavu in March 2011. I worked for 5 months at the Transit and Orientation Centre with former child soldiers.
My work consisted, amongst other things, in training staff on ways of organizing activities and improving the management of organization and communication within the Centre. Another part of my job was organizing weekly drawing classes with the children. Once I had implemented this part of the project I adapted it to become an art therapy class. In fact, I realized that drawing allowed the children to express things that they couldn’t always manage to put into words. Afterwards, I would have individual interviews with each of them to analyze the content of their pieces of artwork and the meaning that was hidden in them. Aside from that, I became very quickly integrated as a fully-fledged member of the team of educators and so I also took part in the daily activities of the Centre: keeping records, meetings (both internally and externally with all the people actively involved in the field of child protection), psychological observance of children removed from armed forces and groups, awareness campaigns on topics such as hygiene, living together peacefully… But I also took part in organizing trainings on child protection for soldiers and civilians as well as in the reunification of children and their families.
In a nutshell, this experience has given me so much, both on a personal and a professional level. I’ve learned so much, I put my shoulder to the wheel, and I will never forget the wonderful exchanges and encounters which I had there. »
Ulf Sandström, Sweden
Ulf Sandström works with the Peaceful Heart Network, to ease suffering and prevent violence through spreading First Aid for stress and trauma with TTT – Trauma Tapping Technique.
“I met Murhabazi though my colleague Gunilla Hamne when he was in Sweden to receive the World’s Children’s Prize for his relentless work in liberating child soldiers. He is a fascinating man, chosen by children as their hero. When I had the opportunity to see the results of his devotion and work at BVES in Congo I wanted to support it, learn from it and tell the world about it. If you can contribute in any way to support BVES and Murhabazi’s team please do – I can think of few worthier causes.”