Monday, 2 April 2012

Day 2

Kigali memorial centre - first full day in rwanda. I have seen, read and listened to so much information today I'm not going to be able to do it full justice In a nightly blog which is being written when really l need to sleep. So, to quickly run through what I've seen with a view to writing a much detailed blog from all my notes when l get home here goes:-

The morning was spent with a guided tour of the Kigali memorial centre. We were taken around the gardens which incorporated three large enclosed concrete graves which were quite haunting with single red roses laying on the top where people had wanted to pay their respects. There was also an open grave where many victims of the genocide are still being laid to rest today, and in fact will be on Saturday (memorial day). We were also told that fresh graves were being dug in the grounds beyond the centre which just shows that even now remains are still being found.

We then moved on to the exhibition inside which gives a detailed account of Rwanda's history, the genocides that took place before 1994, the political propaganda machine that actively promoted the most effective way of removing tutsis from existence, the abandonment of survivors by agencies such as the red cross to the re-education programmes currently run by Aegis to ensure that it never happens again. Again this is very brief and l'll explain more on my return.

This afternoon we looked in detailed at the the Aegis trusts education programme and social programmes.

Just a few statistics for now regarding the education programme:-
To date over 8800 Rwandan children have sat through the day workshops run by the aegis trust which is in total 214 groups of children. To put them through this programme costs $25 per child. Why do they go to the centre to learn about the genocide .... Because the teachers in the schools try their best to avoid the subject, they don't know how to tackle it. Tomorrow I'll write in detail how the programme works (please bear with me, I'm still trying to process everything I've learnt today!!)

The final section concentrated on the social fund programme which helps
Primarily widows and orphans turn their lives around, from the restructuring of their homes, to school tuition fees and for the younger children essentials such as school uniforms. We will be looking at this in much more detail tomorrow.

This is just a very brief overview and l promise to pad it out much more on my return including all the photos I've taken.

Will update tomorrow. X

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