A few weeks ago, old classmates and friends had the opportunity to reunite and to meet colleagues from different cohorts in Rwanda during the first alumni gathering that Glocal organizes overseas. The encounter represented a fantastic opportunity to learn about local development initiatives and to identify potential opportunities for collaboration among the graduates of our program.
The location of the encounter and the Rwandese people were an essential part of the weekend in which 17 alumni from 5 cohorts and 7 countries participated.
During the gathering our alumni visited the Kigali Genocide Memorial, where they learned about the local national trauma as a basis for the development work that is being done in the present. Additionally, the group visited several projects focusing on economic development and women empowerment, such as Hands of Mothers and the embroidery center at Niyamirambo, the Muslim neighborhood of Kigali.
In order to learn firsthand about the local experience, the group visited and stayed at The Agahozo Shalom Youth Village (ASYV). This residential community in rural Rwanda is the home of orphaned youth and is involved in education, conflict resolution and international development. Visiting this place exposed our alumni to important and inspiring initiatives that occur in the country.
By the end of the encounter, the alumni presented their challenges of working in the development field and held an open discussion and group learning session about the ways to overcome these challenges and to keep working together in new projects.
Glocal aims to create a strong network of development practitioners who lead social change in the international development field. Therefore we look forward to having more successful gatherings in the future and expand our involvement in the area.
Check this video that summarizes the wonderful experience our alumni had in Rwanda.