Grace Rwanda’s in the Rwandan News

April 7, 2016  |  Articles, General  |  No Comments
Elizabeth Johnson shows some of the books donated to Rwandan librarians recently trained in Kigali.

Elizabeth Johnson shows some of the books donated to Rwandan librarians recently trained in Kigali.

 

Just a few months after arriving in Rwanda to focus more on local operations, Grace Rwanda’s leaders are already in the news.

Elizabeth Johnson was celebrated for her literacy promotion work with Grace Rwanda in a feature story in Rwanda’s The New Times newspaper the other day. The paper is the leading English-language daily in the country.

The piece, titled, “Empowering community-based librarians to serve,” focused on a recent workshop to train librarians held at Kigali Public Library. The librarians, brought in from all over the country, were trained in library management, cataloguing, book recording, and filing to improve their skills. The Rwandan government has made increasing literacy in the country a priority.

Grace Rwanda believes that educating librarians is a great step to empowering Rwandans to foster greater literacy among youth. To that end, our organization donated 150 dictionaries to the librarians to support their literacy efforts, and our efforts were noted in the article.

Here’s an excerpt of what else the news story had to say about us:

Elizabeth Mujawamariya-Johnson attended the workshop in her capacity as a member of the Rwandan diaspora working in international development. She recently returned with her husband from Canada for permanent stay in Rwanda.

While still in Canada, she had initiated an organization called Grace Rwanda Society based in Langley, British Columbia in Canada. 

In 2014, she decided to create a sister organization that would act as a local NGO, hence the birth of Ineza Foundation. 

“In January I moved to Rwanda full-time with my husband to kind of increase our capacity so we can open the office and be able to assemble an operational team here for Ineza Foundation so they can be the ones to implement all the projects for Grace Rwanda Society,” Mujawamariya-Johnson explained. 

The foundation recently signed a memorandum of understanding with the Ministry of Youth and ICT to equip 21 community libraries across the country under their respective district youth centers. 

The first two beneficiaries were; Muhanga Youth Center in Muhanga district, Southern Province, and Kayonza Youth Center in Kayonza district, Eastern Province, which were equipped with books, computers and e-readers. 

Read more of the article on The New Times web site. And check back for more updates from the field as we continue to ramp up our youth literacy work in Rwanda.

You can get regular updates on our work by following @GraceRwanda, liking us on Facebook, adding us in your Google+ circle, and watching our videos on YouTube.

Grace Rwanda in the news: From Kwantlen to Kigali

July 20, 2015  |  Articles, General  |  No Comments

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Grace Rwanda co-founder Elizabeth Johnson continues to inspire others with her dedication to youth literacy in Rwanda.

Recently the Kwantlen Polytechnic University graduate was profiled in the school’s 2014/15 Accountability Plan and Report, singled out with other exceptional grads who are contributing to their community.

In an article titled, “From KPU to Kigali: Langley humanitarian brings literacy to her home country,” the university highlighted Johnson’s “compassionate and international mindset,” and her “efforts to serve humanity and work toward peace.”

Here’s an excerpt:

Elizabeth Johnson is bringing literacy to Rwanda, one book at a time. Through the volunteer-run charity she co-founded after graduating from KPU’s School of Business, Johnson has to date helped renovate a Rwandan school, build six mini school libraries, build a kitchen facility that nourishes over 1,500 students and create two community youth centre libraries that are home to over 15,000 books.

Her next goal is to supply books to all 87,000 students in Rwanda’s Muhanga District, and 20 youth centres across the country. It’s work that takes a village. A Rotarian with Langley Sunrise, Johnson’s literacy efforts have connected local Rotary clubs in Langley and North Delta to multiple clubs in Rwanda. She has also received cross-Canada support from corporate sponsors and individuals.

The causes she supports have incredibly deep, personal roots within Johnson. Born and raised in Rwanda, she lived through the country’s Tutsi genocide in 1994. While there, she served in a variety of important positions with institutions that include the Ministry of Agriculture, Care Australia and World Vision. In 1999, she brought her compassionate and international mindset with her to Canada, where she now speaks across the country to raise awareness about genocide.

Read the full article in the Kwantlen report here, starting on page 33.

You can get regular updates on our work by following @GraceRwanda, liking us on Facebook, adding us in your Google+ circle, and watching our videos on YouTube.

Grace Rwanda gets government recognition

January 13, 2014  |  Articles, General  |  No Comments

elizabeth-johnson-engGrace Rwanda is getting noticed by the government. We’ve been singled out as a notable Canadian international aid project by the Department of Foreign Affairs!

We’re pleased to have been included in the federal government’s online initiative devoted to promoting this year’s International Development Week, held in February.

DFAIT’s feature project, “How Are You Making A Difference?” profiles more than a dozen amazing Canadian non-profits working on humanitarian projects in developing countries.

Have a read of what these inspiring citizens are accomplishing abroad!

You can get regular updates by following @GraceRwanda, liking us on Facebook, adding us in your Google+ circle, and watching our videos on YouTube.

We’ve Built Another Mini-Library in Rwanda

September 4, 2013  |  Articles, General  |  No Comments

 

Muhanga Youth Centre Library

This summer, the Grace Rwanda team set out to Muhanga, a rural district of 350,000 residents southeast of Rwanda’s capital, Kigali.

We have been working with education officials there on an ambitious new plan. Over the next few years we are commiting to putting a mini-library in every school in the district: about 104 elementary schools and 42 secondary schools.

We want to get a book into the hands of each of Muhanga’s 87,000 students. We plan to start by fundraising to put mini-libraries in all Grades 1 to 3 classrooms, serving more than 43,500 students.

Our goal in Rwanda this summer was to get more students reading immediately. So, to kick off our Muhanga schools campaign, Grace Rwanda created and stocked a new mini-library in a community centre in Nyamabuye, called the Muhanga Youth Friendly Centre.

Youth and students from the area, about 30-50 each day, were using the facility to study and do their homework. Now, with the help of a $6,000 new mini-library, complete with new bookshelves, stacks of new books, dictionaries and periodicals, plus new tables and chairs, they have access to more books and resources to help them succeed.

The District Vice Mayor was on hand to open the new library facility and the community is very excited to move forward with Grace Rwanda on upcoming school library projects.

Check out more fantastic photos of the Muhanga project on our Flickr site.

We’re thrilled to be launching the next phase of our “Let’s Read Together” mini-libraries program this fall. Stay tuned for news about upcoming fundraisers and events to support our exciting new initiative.

Stay in the loop with us by following @GraceRwanda, liking us on Facebook, and visiting Toonies4Change.org.

Grace Rwanda School Libraries

January 3, 2012  |  Articles  |  2 Comments

Grace Rwanda, in partnership with PREFER, supplied GS Cyuve and GS Karinzi,
secondary schools in the Cyuve Sector with a total of $2,000 in school supplies in 2011:

2 wooden bookcases with locking doors for library book storage
1 television set
1 DVD/cd player
1 stereo player with speakers
Teacher manuals w/cd lessons
Student text books
Total per school: $1000.00 USD

We took both head masters to Kigali to purchase their supplies. They were
both so very excited to have this opportunity to stock their schools with better
books and equipment than they had ever hoped for.

Grace Rwanda featured in the North Shore News

July 6, 2011  |  Articles  |  No Comments


Making change in Rwanda
By Manisha Krishnan, North Shore News June 8, 2011

When bad things happen, the natural human instinct is to try to forget about them.

But sometimes, it can be crucial to remember, so that history doesn’t repeat itself. In the case of the Rwandan Genocide, the latter is true.
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