Monday, July 4, 2011

Guest writer, Grant Jenkin: Reminder of the past

 Grant Jenkin (Developing World Connections volunteer) writes directly from Rwanda about building a cultural centre in Rwanda, new school programs for women and reminders of the past

Back in Kigali after an excellent week of work and fun. Looks like the rain has finally stopped and that we are well and truly into the dry season, and it happened just in time for the celebration at Nelson Mandela Education Center (NMEC).  The Green helmets, a German NGO who have been working on developing a school and young students since 200, has finished its term and has handed the school over to the Rwandan Government. It was an excellent ceremony. Illustrating all the new technologies and building principles that they have been working on for so long.

 It also showcased the Covaga Innovation Centre and the work that the NMEC students did last year before graduating and now thee six former students have created their own construction company - Vision Construction Company. Some members of the Covaga women were also there to show there appreciation to the green helmets and the school. All in all a great day for everyone.
Then took a group to the very emotional genocide memorial at Nyamata. A church which was used for the slaughter of over 5000. It is always so shocking even for myself after experiencing something so positive and uplifting and then having the reminder of the past...

Yesterday was liberation day in Rwanda so we so worked a half day then visited the finally completed Girls initiative school in Gashora. Very impressive facilities which makes school facilities in the West look poor. Its a very interesting experimental program only for women studying sciences. It hosts some of Rwandas most intelligent girls for three years before they hopefully go on to universities here and all over the world. 

Finaly we are waiting to catch a bus to Gisenyi, on lake Kivu,  for some much deserved R&R. A short trip as we will be returning to Kigali tomorrow so that we can catch the Festival of independence day at Amahoro stadium July 4th -  to signify the end of the Genocide.

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