Portrait of Leah Chishugi

Leah Chishugi

Leah Chishugi describes herself as a survivor of the Rwandan genocide. Leah has documented her experiences in her recent book A Long Way from Paradise.

Now 34, Leah grew up in eastern Congo but by 16 she had moved to Kigali, the Rwandan capital, to find work as a model, later marrying and having a son. In 1994 she was caught up in the conflict and wounded, and her father was killed. She escaped only after being left for dead under a pile of corpses, fleeing to Uganda, and later South Africa and the UK, where she was granted asylum.

Since her arrival in the UK Leah has found a greater purpose in life through devotion to the service of others. This is what led her to found Everything is a Benefit, a charity which aims to create awareness and make a practical and emotional difference to the lives of women and children in the eastern part of Congo.