See the May report on YEGO’s computer-assisted learning (CAL) program. Learn about its objectives, outcomes and recommendations.
Students in the computer-assisted learning program are not only learning new skills, they’re also forming friendships and creating community.
This week the students took up a collection and threw a party for one of their classmates, Dianne. This program is proving to be successful on many levels!
Josianne is one of the students in the YEGO computer-assisted learning program. Not only is Josianne experiencing the joy of learning, she’s also experiencing what it means to be in community.
Josianne is an orphan, with no family to help her celebrate important milestones like birthdays. But last week her classmates got together and organized a party to mark the occasion, complete with candies, groundnuts and a small gift. The celebration included words of appreciation, encouragement for Josianne and a prayer.
There was a spirit of love, unity and solidarity in the classroom that day. What better way to build community, peace and hope for the future.
25th Anniversary of the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi in Rwanda
April 7, 2019 marks the 25th anniversary of the 1994 genocide against the Tutsi in Rwanda. The genocide left more than 1 million Tutsi and moderate Hutu dead and millions of Rwandans traumatized and in desolate conditions.
The genocide lasted 100 days, from April to July. During this period, all Rwandans remember both the tragedy and the failure of humanity to help save lives. General Romeo Dallaire, a Canadian UN peacekeeping commander in Rwanda at that time, is an eloquent witness of this situation, as demonstrated in the following quote from his book, Shake Hands with the Devil (2004).
Rwanda will never ever leave me. It’s in the pores of my body. My soul is in those hills, my spirit is with the spirits of all those people who were slaughtered and killed that I know of, and many that I didn’t know. … Fifty to sixty thousand people walking in the rain and the mud to escape being killed, and seeing a person there beside the road dying. We saw lots of them dying. And lots of those eyes still haunt me, angry eyes or innocent eyes, no laughing eyes. But the worst eyes that haunt me are the eyes of those people who were totally bewildered.
Most of the women and youth who survived the genocide still live with poverty, in challenging conditions and struggle with trauma. This is a critical and emotional time for the survivors because it reminds them of the loss of family members, friends and family properties, and violence and rape for some.
On the other hand, many women and youth related to the perpetrators of the genocide also live in poverty, dealing with shame and trauma due to violence. They too have experienced challenging circumstances both in Rwanda and in exile in neighbouring countries.
The 25th commemoration comes with traumatic crises but also with hope for the future. It is indeed joyful to realize that despite the destructive nature of the 1994 genocide, the post- genocide Rwanda has been characterized by impressive developments.
The government of Rwanda has managed to bring all Rwandans together to rebuild their country in all sectors of life, but especially in the areas of peace, unity and reconciliation. Though a small country, Rwanda is currently doing well economically in business, IT, tourism, environmental protection, education, health and more.
But there are still many vulnerable women and youth who are struggling with poverty and trauma and need support. Yego Rwanda was founded to help address their needs by providing healing retreats, counselling services, education and food support.
Yego Rwanda is looking forward, exploring ways of guiding and supporting women and youth to help them develop themselves, meet their needs and heal. Initiatives of interest include co-operatives, savings and lending, cooking, crafts-making and sewing.
Yego Rwanda is deeply grateful to our sister charity Yego Canada, and all who support our ministry, for being part of this crucial work and providing critical support.
The Rev. Dr. Emmanuel Gatera will be returning to Edmonton to teach a course on The Genesis of Hate and the Trauma of Genocide – The Rwandan Context. The course is being offered by St. Stephen’s College and runs from May 27 – 31. Reserve your seat by April 26! For more information, see the St. Stephen’s website.
It was a day of celebration! The mayor’s official representative was on hand for the ribbon cutting ceremony.
Then it was on to the computer room where Carolyn demonstrated some of the curriculum to be used in the computer-assisted learning program.
The celebration continued in the hall across the street, with speeches and entertainment from the YEGO dancers. These youth learned to dance through the YEGO dance program and are now able to find employment as dancers at weddings and other celebrations.
Support from the district
Yesterday YEGO received a contract to use the building space for 3 years rent-free, with the option to renew. This is a huge vote of support from the district.
The mayor’s representative praised the work of YEGO and is using YEGO as a model for other organizations wishing to do similar work. The district sees YEGO as a partner in working for improvements in the lives of the Rwandan people.
The celebration concluded with bottles of pop for all and interviews with individuals.
Emmanuel and Athanasie regularly minister to several women and children who need their support and the help of YEGO. The team brought rice, beans, sugar, porridge, and laundry soap to a young mom today. The visits remind the women that they are not forgotten, and that they are cared for.
The Internet was set up today! All is ready for the grand opening of the computer-assisted learning centre tomorrow.