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Country Director's Welcome for Rwanda

Welcome from Peace Corps Rwanda Country Director, Vanessa Shaw-Dore

Turikumwe: We are all together.

Muraho! Greetings from the land of a thousand hills! Thank you for your interest in Peace Corps Rwanda. In 2009 the Peace Corps returned to Rwanda at the request of the Rwandan Government. At that time, President of Rwanda Paul Kagame, in his piece titled “A Different Discussion About Aid” published by the Huffington Post, stated: “While some consider development mostly in terms of infusion of capital, budgets and head counts, we in Rwanda place equal importance to relationships between peoples who have a passion to learn from one another, preparing the next generation of teachers, administrators and CEOs to see the exchange of values and ideas as the way to build the competencies of our people, and to create a prosperous nation. We will do this because we see that the only investment with the possibility of infinite returns is in our children, and because after a couple of years in Rwanda, working and learning with our people, these Peace Corps volunteers will be our sons and daughters, too.”

As a Peace Corps Volunteer in Rwanda, you will work in collaboration with community to build capacity at the local level. As an Education Volunteer, you will experience the great honor and privilege of working alongside the Ministry of Education with its noble goal of educating the children of Rwanda and teaching English as a Foreign Language. As a Health Volunteer you will work alongside the Ministry of Health to reduce stunting rates through the First 1,000 Days program. By exchanging our cultures and learning from each other, the impact of our collaboration is magnified and generates the possibility of infinite returns. As a Kinyarwanda proverb states, “Abishyize hamwe nta kibananira,” or those who join together cannot fail. The Rwandan tradition of Umuganda is an excellent example of this proverb, as communities all over the country spend one Saturday morning each month discussing their priorities and working together to develop their communities.

If you become a Peace Corps volunteer in Rwanda, not only will you work alongside your Ministry of Education or Ministry of Health partners in achieving development targets, but you will also strengthen the trust and mutual understanding between our two societies. As a Peace Corps Volunteer in Rwanda, you will be uniquely positioned to support peace and friendship as you learn about Rwanda and as you share American culture with Rwandans. I invite you to take the bold step of becoming a Peace Corps Volunteer in this beautiful country, the land of a thousand hills. Turikumwe – we are all together!