by “Maj” Majigiza
FROM CALI TO KIGALI (A My Cousin Connection Story)

Back in the 1970’s, when I was in my 20’s, before I had any children, I knew that I didn’t want to be an old Black man in North America, because of the lack of respect and racism I would encounter from the larger society around me. When I retired in my 70’s, my children were grown and on their own, so I decided to make my move to the continent.

I chose my destination by applying my acquired knowledge of the African countries, their histories, and their politics as I reviewed videos from real people reporting their real experiences on the ground interacting with the local folks. I chose Kigali, Rwanda; and I picked My Cousin Connection as the best way for me to get here.

Watching the Jai Essence videos, participating in a couple of her interactive sessions, becoming a member of My Cousin Connection, enrolling in the Relocate to Rwanda course, and communicating with the main Rwandan administrator and contact person, Emmanuel “Niiyo” , gave me complete confidence that my move to Kigali was totally doable, and going through My Cousin Connection was the best way to do it.

My Cousin Connection (MCC) had me picked up from the airport and I stayed at Jai’s place, Jai Essence Estates, for three weeks (sorry, this option is currently not available). I shared my housing preferences/requirements with MCC’s administrator Niiyo and MCC’s real estate person Christine. Christine found a 2-bedroom, 2-bathroom, fully furnished apartment for me at a rental rate of $800 per month, complete with sunset views. Needless to say, I was totally pleased.

Since I have been in Kigali, I have not heard a police siren. I have not heard an ambulance. I have not heard a fire truck. I have not heard a gunshot. Maybe seven helicopters flying overhead operated by the military, but that’s about it.

Currently, I’m waiting for the time to pass and near the end of my 90-day visa, I will be applying for my Retired Person’s visa. MCC’s Niiyo handles all of this. He assisted me with obtaining a local phone number, setting up my bank accounts, everything. Whatever your question, Emmanuel knows the answer.

The only way my move could have been easier would have been to use Star Trek technology and transport me from my bedroom in Cali to my bedroom in Kigali. I am here. I am happy. And, I’m not going back!

An American Runaway,

 by Reginald
My Cousin Connection made our stay here in Kigali a very pleasurable

Good morning cousin, Marie, Liam and myself want to thank you and My Cousin Connection for making our stay here in Kigali a very pleasurable one, we enjoyed every moment here among the Beautiful Rwandan people, So we say Thank You Very Much!

 by Rosalind H
Cousin connection is there for us...I enjoyed the Lifestyle City Tour

I just wanted to say that while in Rwanda I went on the My Cousin Connection tour for people considering repatriation. This was one of the most informed and engaging tours that I have been on. My tour guide was Emmanuel and he was welcoming, engaging, informed and went out his way to help us with whatever we needed. They took us to various neighborhoods and museums explaining the history of Kigali etc. I also want to give a shout out to The Driver(Claude), he was such a nice patient guy. At the end of the tour we met the fabulous Jai Essence and her mother Rozalyn who opened up their home to welcome us. They gave us so much information to help us on this journey. This is not an easy process and to have people who are their for you is so important. thank you so much.

 by Kat
Professional and Prompt

My experience with My Cousin Connection has been a great investment in helping me to navigate my move over to Rwanda. They are professional and respond promptly to my inquiries. I feel supported and valued as a customer. They are my go to for any new guidelines or information relevant to my journey here in Rwanda. I greatly recommend signing up if you are new to Rwanda or just want to connect with an expat community.

 by Yahya Bey

Outstanding platform that provides those who desire to relocate to Rwanda with detailed information on the necessity of life. Join My cousin Connection for the experience of a lifetime

 by Lovinglife

My Cousins Connection was referred to me because when I came to Rwanda I knew no one and immediately felt the effects of the huge language barrier.
Having the membership was a no brainer to me because again, I didn’t know anyone in Rwanda and the language barrier was too much to wing it. I have been provided with information, resources and assistance in everything from housing, car rental and taxis to visa renewal.
I am so grateful for my cousins.

 by Turyia

My Cousin Connection (MCC), has been with me and my Rwandan journey every step of the way. I am grateful for Jai and her team. They have told me about shopping in the community as opposed to the chain stores like Simba and T2000. Assist me with reliable and trustworthy drivers and staff in my home and business. They assisted me in finding my dream home after a horrible experience due to language barriers at my former residence.
I cant say enough about MCC, they indeed create a community for you here with monthly events and weekly meetups. Not only are these events a chance to get to known other people from the diaspora, we have blessed with essential information given to us.
Thank You MCC, Thank you Jai for your vision and your passion to help those around you.

 by Sylvia

My Cousin Connection is an invaluable resource for travelers and repats. There’s community, tips & guides and actual people to help you navigate your journey. Cheers to continued growth and expansion.

 by Wynndie
Jai's creation of this space is nothing short of genius

I truly wish My Cousin Connection was available a year ago when I came to Rwanda, I would have saved me money and hard lessons. As a retiree, My Cousin Connections professional staff has and continues to assist me in the navigation around the country and guidance through Rwanda systems, governance and opportunities for a better life, I could not imagine in America. My Cousin Connection has done and continues to do all the work for you. All that come or express a visit to Rwanda, I forward the web page to insure their questions are answered, their stay and /or relocation is a very smooth one. Thank you guys for doing the work, researching and veryifying accurate and up to date information for us.

 by Rakayia Holmes
We Couldn't Ask for More!

Where to start... I signed up for my cousin connection prior to visiting Rwanda. The information provided was accurate, essential and just plain good to know. Upon arriving, my family and I were greeted by the MCC team with open arms and ready to support. There are things that we didn’t realize we would need, and the MCC team was there to assist us in finding it.

I must say that I wasn’t really sure what was “real” and what was “youtube persona” as it relates to Jai Essence but to our (mines, my husbands and my adult daughters) delight it’s like that old song by the Dramatics “Whatcha See is Watcha Get” she and the MCC team are our cousins now.

I would be negligent if I didn’t mention that Jai and the MCC team brings people together and I LOVE that! I’ve met so many good people, Rwandan and otherwise since coming here and I look forward to meeting more.

Lastly, the current situation with the virus makes traveling right now a headache. However, what I can say is that Jai and the MCC team keep you current on new rules, policies and notices. The information has always been timely and relevant and this gives peace of mind.

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