Rwanda

*Video interviews available below (featuring Richard Batsinduka)

Post-Genocide Reconciliation

The Rwandan genocide of 1994, resulted in an estimated 800,000 people being murdered out of a population of 11 million. It was the culmination of longstanding ethnic tension between the minority Tutsi, and the majority Hutu peoples.

The genocide left the country in shambles with someone in almost every extended family being affected either as perpetrators or victims. The ongoing fear and tension between the two ethnic groups prevented the normal functioning of communities, businesses and government and the healing that was so necessary among the whole population.

CICR Involvement

CICR was contracted by the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA), in 1997, for a project in Rwanda to re-establish dialogue among key stakeholders of the two ethnic groups and provide conflict management skills to those professionals engaged in resolving disputes. The initiative was lead by one of CICR’s trainers, Richard Batsinduka, a Rwandan-Canadian who’s family had been killed in the genocide.

The project facilitated inter-ethnic civility and communication within selected segments of professional sectors, including:

  • Provision of conflict resolution training to approximately 150 people from whom suitable candidates were chosen to become conflict resolution trainers
  • Institution of train-the-trainer courses, follow-up apprenticeship opportunities and certification of trainers.
  • Implementation of ongoing support to the Rwandan trainers to continue training in their professional sectors.

Results

Outputs over the four year life of the project were:

  • Approximately 700 professionals and workers from over 50 organizations are skilled in managing and resolving conflicts;
  • Seven conflict resolution trainer/practitioners are certified

Outcomes during and following completion of the project are:

  • Several thousand individuals resolve conflicts more effectively, including greater inter-ethnic harmony in their workplace, communities and families;
  • The Center for Peace was established at the University of Rwanda in Butari to continue providing CICR’s conflict resolution training;
  • One Trainer participation on the Rwandan National Unity and Reconciliation Commission, and as of 2011 three others are still active in the ADR field;
  • New inter-ethnic housing development, funded by CIDA, established and operating harmoniously, based on training provided to the inhabitants.

Impacts of the training in Rwanda*

*(video in its original version/French only)

The beginning of the TPN program in Rwanda*

*(video in its original version/French only)

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