One of the impacts of the 1994 genocide was an increased number of people with a range of disabilities including physical disabilities, visual and hearing impairments and mental health trauma.
There is a positive political and social will to realise the rights of people with disabilities, but resources and technical capacity remain a challenge.
VSO Rwanda’s disability programme works on three fronts:
ensuring disability is mainstreamed into development at national and local level
building the capacity of civil society to represent and support their members
improving the quality of services aimed at people with disabilities.
Volunteers are being recruited with skills in advocacy, organisational development, inclusive education and special needs education, and in specialist service areas including sign language, audiology and speech therapy.
VSO Rwanda works with the government to improve the quality of basic education. The government has successfully increased the number of children attending primary school – with above 90% of children enrolling.
However, the teacher training at pre-service level is poor and there’s currently no national in service training for Rwandan teachers. The result is teacher-centred teaching and children who don’t learn enough to contribute to their families and society.
We recruit professional primary school teachers and head teachers, and local government education officials, mostly on two year placements. They support our work in teacher training, head teacher training, and national level policy and advocacy work.
National volunteering and youth
VSO believes in the value of volunteering to meet development goals. Rwanda’s strong volunteering culture is accompanied by few guidelines for national organisations that work through volunteers and so we work with government to elaborate policies on volunteering. We also work with several local organisations to support their volunteering programmes.
We work to ensure that young people, mostly those in upper secondary education or those who have recently completed their education, are more able to find work. We support the government’s TVET (Technical and Vocational Education and Training) work, as well as working with organisations that deliver work readiness programmes.
Get in touch with VSO Rwanda at:
PO Box 4599, Kigali, Rwanda