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Community and National Leaders hold Forum on Reconciliation

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Erica J. Barks-Ruggles, U.S. Ambassador to Rwanda, speaking at the event.

Kigali: On September 7th, 2017, Rwandan community and national leaders held a dialogue forum on social cohesion at the Institute of Research and Dialogue for Peace at Gisozi. The dialogue forum brought together community members and representatives from the National Unity and Reconciliation Commission (NURC), Ministry of Local Government, other Government of Rwanda ministries, and the parliament. Erica J. Barks-Ruggles, U.S. Ambassador to Rwanda, also spoke at the event.

Rwanda has attained an impressive degree of peace, security, and development. Building peace is, however, a long journey and several challenges remain along the way.

The dialogue forum is part of a 933 million RWF project funded by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), titled Healing our Communities.

The project aims to improve community responsiveness and adaptability to post-genocide needs by establishing links between communities and government officials. Part of the project’s scope is holding listening sessions at the local and national level.

So far, the project has held listening sessions in eight target districts.  In doing so, it has helped create effective channels through which policymakers can collaborate and hear directly from communities about the challenges they face.

Speaking at the event, Erica J. Barks-Ruggles, U.S. Ambassador to Rwanda, expressed satisfaction with the project’s accomplishments.

“The U.S. government is proud to fund this project. We believe that Rwanda is remarkably resilient for a country that is still recovering from one of the most devastating genocides in modern history. We are honored to be granted the opportunity to help advance the reconciliation process,” she said.


The project operates in eight target districts: Gicumbi, Gakenke, Karongi, Nyamasheke, Rubavu, Kirehe, Bugesera and Gisagara. Its implementing partner, Karuna Center for Peacebuilding, and its three Rwandan partners, Institute of Research and Dialogue for Peace (IRDP), Healing and Rebuilding Our Communities (HROC), and Aegis Trust use a comprehensive, inter-generational approach. This approach promotes social cohesion that integrates trauma healing, community dialogue, joint problem-solving and volunteer projects to support the vulnerable.

This approach promotes social cohesion that integrates trauma healing, community dialogue, joint problem-solving and volunteer projects to support the vulnerable. (End)


 

 

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