Former Rwandan street children form gospel band to sing of Jesus' love

From l-r: D'Amour, David and Pacifique

Vital "David" Hitimana, Pacifique Niyitanga and D'Amour Habinshuti once lived on a garbage dump where the aim of every day was survival.

There was little point in dreaming as it was hard enough to scrape together some food to eat and the only escape from the torment of daily life was drugs.

"On the streets my favourite food was drugs," said Pacifique.

"I took the drugs to make me free from the sadness."

But today their life looks very different, after being supported over the last five years by the Hope for Life Ministry, which works to give street children in Kigali, Rwanda, a new start at life.

"On the streets, I was sad but now there is a difference. I think God has a plan for me. I'm hopeful for a good future. I want to be a good man and I want a job and a family," says Pacifique.

In addition to receiving a formal education and training for their future careers, the three young men have formed a gospel band, Shining Hope, to sing about Christ's love and share it with others.

(Photo: Hope for Life Ministry)At Radio Inkoramutima, where the boys were interviewed about their band

Their early years of life may have been unimaginably painful but it hasn't killed their hope or passion to live life to the fullest for God.

Their first song, "You Are Precious", was written by 19-year-old David and recorded with the help of Hope for Life volunteers. It speaks about the joy of knowing God.

"Who could hear your words and not love you, who could see your works and not love you. Not One! Oh no one!" they sing.

Shining Hope's song has had plenty of airplay on a local gospel radio station and the boys were thrilled to be invited on for an interview.

The whole experience has only boosted their hope in the future.

"With my background on the streets, I never expected to make music that was played on the radio or to be interviewed," says David.

"Being with my brothers and having the support of HFLM really encouraged me."

Follow Shining Hope on their Facebook page

Watch the video for You are Precious here:

Watch Pacifique's story here: