The Early Days of Boise To Bukavu

Boise To Bukavu, Inc. was started by Ruth and Keith York in Boise, Idaho.  It is a community organization that helps African refugees create successful, self-sustaining futures.   We work locally within Boise to assist our own community with understanding the assimilation needs of refugees.  We also assist the Nshombo family of Kampala, Uganda with daily sustenance, educational and vocational needs – in the U.S. and Africa.  We are a nonprofit organization working under the umbrella of Karitas Foundation, a 501c3 organization assisting with a variety of humanitarian needs around the world.  Please visit their webpage at .

Contact information for Boise To Bukavu, Inc.:

6455 Snake River Ranch Rd.  Wilson, WY  83014   Phone:  208-870-7147

(Keith and Ruth are living in Jackson Hole, but continuing the work of Boise to Bukavu from here).


Photo Credit for our Banner

When we first started this website I scoured the internet looking for an image  that evoked the right emotion.  Although none of the work we do is directly with refugee camps, that reality is the common denominator in the lives of those we are aiming to help.  I found this image on google and, at the time,  did a search (admittedly brief) to try to find out where it came from.  Although I didn’t get an answer, I chose to use it anyways with the idea that before too long we’d find an ‘official’ image to  use.

While for some information on the economic challenges of refugee life in Uganda I stumbled upon a photo-journalist’s blog, Scarlett Lion,  that had me mesmerized.   That blog linked to another blog and, ultimately, to the website of Glenna Gordon.  Not only did I find a rich source of images and stories, I found the artist who had captured the image I was using.Kampala Quarry - Glenna Gordon

We’ve been given permission to keep using this image, which excites me greatly.  I hadn’t fully allowed myself to get emotionally attached to this image because I always suspected we were going to have to find something else.  Now that I know we can keep using it, and I’ve met (virtually) the artist, I’m convinced it was meant to be.

Several folks have asked if the picture was of  Fidel, or of one of his siblings living in Uganda.  It’s not.  The image, however, is of a boy living a life that Fidel and all of his siblings lived for much, if not most, of their lives thus far.  And Fidel was not much older than this boy when he left his family and struck out on his own, for good.   Thanks for asking.