Donation Appeal
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An Opportunity to Return to Africa and Study at One of the Top Universities in the World

Raised So Far USD 1,660
15% Complete
Target : USD 10,700

About Appeal

I was recently admitted to the prestigious Carnegie Mellon University Africa (CMU-Africa) program to pursue a Master of Science in Information Technology with a concentration in IT Entrepreneurship. Carnegie Mellon ranking puts it among the top technology and engineering universities globally, and this is an opportunity to get a world-class education while returning to Africa, a place I have only known from a distance since I spent my entire life in Saudi Arabia as a refugee.

Tuition fees at CMU-Africa are $47,300 per year. Fortunately, I have received partial scholarships of $38,300 that goes towards the first academic year of the program. The tuition includes textbooks, a laptop, and access to other activities on campus. Even though it is a two-year program, I am hopeful that I will be able to renew my scholarships, and also raise additional funding if given the chance of demonstrating my academic ability.

I need your help in funding my tuition balance for the current academic year, which is $9,000, with 50% due in the first semester starting in August 2018. Furthermore, I am requesting an additional $1,000 to assist me with airfare and visa costs, which means I need a total of $10,000 of support.

I am due to begin orientation in Kigali on July 27th, and therefore, I am making an urgent appeal for support to help me realize my dream of being a leading Somali businesswoman in the technology sector driving Africa and Somalia’s transformation. 

Rwanda is a beacon of hope for Africa, and I believe there is no better country for me to learn from. If a country can be peaceful after a horrifying genocide that claimed lives of over 1 million people and become a role model for all its neighboring nations, it makes me believe that one day this might be the case for Somalia.

My Journey as a Somali Refugee in Saudi Arabia

When the civil war began in Somalia in 1991, my mother was pregnant with me, and my parents decided to leave Somalia for Saudi Arabia with my three older siblings. When I was born, my parents decided to name me Rahma, which means mercy, for the mercy they received from God to able to survive the war and live in peace after watching everything they hold precious and dear to their hearts destroyed in front of their own eyes.

My father, a fisherman who had spent all his life at sea, became a janitor at a local hospital to support us. Despite the fact I graduated from high school as one of the top ten students in Saudi Arabia, I had no prospect of pursuing a bachelor’s degree since my family had no means to pay for it. One day I saw a news article about a scholarship offered to students with exceptional grades. I applied and got admitted, and successfully completed a bachelor degree, To this day, I can clearly remember the expression on my parent's faces when I gave them the news of my admission. They were so proud, for I was the first person to go to college in my family for three generations.

I come from a family of eight siblings. Other than myself and my younger sister who is about to finish her nursing internship, all of my siblings are high school graduates and unemployed. Due to the Saudi Arabia labor laws, no one other than my father is allowed to work since the rest of the family are registered as my father's dependents. I am in desperate need to leave Saudi Arabia, if I don't, I will have to go back to Somalia with my family, and live the life of nomads like the rest our extended family since this is the only thing we can afford, and the only way to ensure our safety.

Recent Donors 19

  • Dorothy Nyambi

    All the best at CMU-Africa

    USD 250 02/08/2018

  • Abby Smith

    USD 15 31/07/2018

  • Anonymous

    Best of luck at CMU

    USD 50 23/07/2018

  • Anonymous

    USD 50 17/07/2018

  • Anonymous

    All the best

    USD 25 17/07/2018

  • Anonymous

    I wish you lots of luck, Rahma!

    USD 50 16/07/2018

  • Anonymous

    I wish you all the best on your journey. Welcome to Rwanda :).

    USD 50 15/07/2018

  • Anonymous Donor

    All the best Rahma at CMU Africa!

    USD 500 14/07/2018

  • Byron Biney

    USD 50 13/07/2018

  • Sam Sheppard

    GBP 15 13/07/2018

  • Emma Walker

    USD 5 13/07/2018

  • MM

    USD 50 13/07/2018

  • Wangari

    Best of Luck Rahma. You will surely attend Carnegie Mellon Africa.

    USD 20 13/07/2018

  • John Munyi

    All the Best !!! Inshallah

    USD 50 13/07/2018

  • s m

    USD 25 13/07/2018