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About Us

City of Joy Rwanda was founded in 2011 by Americans Todd and Andria Ellingson in partnership with Rwandan native John Kayitare.

Todd and Andria lived in Rwanda for eight years with their growing family of four children establishing this ministry alongside many local Rwandan leaders. In 2019 they returned to the States and we have transitioned to 100% national leadership in Rwanda.

Our community has experienced God’s grace in powerful new and fresh ways since City of Joy Rwanda first began and we are determined to continue to develop relationships with our neighbors and the local government to bring life transformation through Jesus.


Vocational Training School

In April of 2012 the Community Center was dedicated as the first building project of City of Joy. Almost immediately, two sewing classes moved into the Community Center for their training. Graduates from the sewing classes have formed an association and are beginning to support themselves through local jobs using their new trade. Graduates also sell their handmade items online with the assistance of City of Joy Rwanda. The vocational sewing classes last for six months, and students learn to sew school uniforms, various purses and bags, and quilted bibs. In 2020 We look forward to launching new vocational programs including traditional Rwandan basket making. You can help us launch this new program here.


Joy Christian School

Joy Christian School began holding classes in January 2013 in the Community Center with preschool and kindergarden children. Today our school extends through 6th grade. In 2019 our first class graduated from 6th grade and scored among the top in Rwanda on their national examps. We continue to support these children as they have moved on to secondary schools around the country. We look forward to launching our own secondary school in the future. Please join us as we pray for God’s guidance. It’s been a long journey with a long way still to go. Child sponsors have made all of this possible. You can sponsor and change the life of a child too. A donation of $40/month will pay for will pay for school supplies, uniforms, teachers salary, and help with additional costs.


Joy Christian Church

Joy Christian Church dedicated its new building on Sunday, August 23rd, 2015 with over 500 people attending! Pastor Lambert was hired to lead weekly worship and to be a school chaplain. Average worship attendance is around 200 as the Word of God is preached each week! Already in its short life Joy Christian Church: has children, youth and adult choirs, has held pastor’s training seminars and youth conferences, and has had the privilege of leading many to surrender their lives to Christ!  

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