‘Springing’ Joy


Every survivor reported that they experienced springing joy and appreciation for ex-prisoners by witnessing how hard and tirelessly they worked for them. I asked survivors what were the signs they have witnessed that signalled to them that their ex-prisoner pair was working very hard, devoted and committed. Their answers were anything other than expected. All survivors reported the sign of devotion and commitment through their five senses. For example, Lawurencia reported that a speed in which Saveri worked in the field signalled to her that he was working in a devoted way.

Lawurencia & Fredelic at work in the field

This photo captures the moment when Lawurencia came back from fixing a rope leashing a goat to her field and noticed that the ex-prisoner worked far ahead of her. Her witnessing his speedy work brought her a pleasant surprise of experiencing his devotion. She reported feeling very happy and joy.

Mukaremera working in the field Rwanda

Another survivor, Mukaremera reported that she “heard” how hard her ex-prisoner pair was working. I probed her further. “What do you mean, you heard him?” She replied, “I could hear him breathing very hard (imitating his heavy breathing). I could also see he was using much energy.” Mukaremera reported that when she paused her work and looked up to her pair, she noticed there were large droplets of sweat on his forehead. The sight of the sweats communicated to her how hard and devotedly he was working for her.

Lawurencia being interviewed as part of ABPRA pilot study

Every survivor reported experience of springing joy as a result of experiencing the devotion of the ex-prisoners through their five senses.

Dr. Minami’s Comment:

As the researcher, I was used to participants describing what the change is through coherent words reported by the participants. But the change that they have allowed me to see was something beyond my expectations and something very simple for them: They felt them through their five senses.