Youth Spaces Pitch Day Is Approaching — Be With Us!

Do you know that 40% of the Rwandan population are aged 14-35 while Uganda has 78% of youth under 30 years of age, according to UNDP? To these stats, we can add one from Unicef: 0-24-year-old population represents 67% of the Congolese. Powerful, right? Imagine what environmental impact these young people can make …

Penny-Jane Cooke, an environment policy and renewable energy industry leader, shared her skills with the youngsters during the “Leadership & Decision Making” session.

Trust us, if we give them inclusive and peaceful spaces where they can create and implement ideas, we can assure the Gorilla Highlands region will be in good hands. Who doesn’t want the fantastic biodiversity of the transboundary areas protected from generation to generation?

Chef Ramadhan Sindayigaya brought his creative experience to our circle in Musanze! This was the “Innovation & Creativity” workshop.

Since we last talked about it in our podcast and showed you a video, our Youth Spaces pilot program has of course been surging! In the beautiful town of Musanze, 26 youngsters have been meeting experts from around the world, cleaned their surroundings and shared meals with Batwa “Pygmy” kids to fight malnutrition. Moreover, on the boundary of Volcanoes National Park we planted over 200 trees!

Our friend Brent Taylor, design thinking specialist, also blessed the workshop and demonstrated his rich knowledge about human-centered design techniques all the way from America!

Every Saturday we unite for Youth Spaces sessions, inspiring us further to develop sustainable projects and businesses that will contribute to our communities. Wish to be part of this? On 9 July 2023 you can witness their creative spirit — the youth will be pitching their many ideas! If you are in Rwanda, don’t miss that Sunday afternoon; join us in person at Isange Paradise Resort from 2 to 6pm! if you can’t make it physically, it’s alright too, you can participate online.

Joe Kahiri played his piano until it got dark! He was the third star of “Innovation & Creativity” and talked, from Uganda, about how powerful these two traits are!

The best ideas will receive seed funding to start making an impact. Their creators will be invited to the Christmas Camp with young people from the next Youth Spaces program. It will be an excellent time to evaluate their activities and note how far along they are with their projects!

As malnutrition among preschool kids is Rwanda’s national challenge, Batwa “Pygmy” communities from Kinigi welcomed us to take meals with them.

Support youngsters by donating any amount to sustain this volunteer-driven project. We’ll plant a tree for every donation we receive! We still have to direct you to GoFundMe for this purpose — despite our long wait for a registration certificate, we are only at the stage of being allowed to operate but not have a bank account. An official jokingly told us that we should not make any fuss as we have been only waiting for a year …

During our tree plantation activities we made sure that every participant got a chance to plant something, and even got reinforcements from our friends.
Coleen Bango, founder of Bango Hydro Farms, showed the participants how to write an effective business/project plan. This took place at Isange, our Pitch Day venue.
Our cycling guests from Canada, the Mossman-Lam family, listened to the local leader Adolphine Murekatete at Umuganda (community work that happens every last Saturday of the month).
The Umuganda morning resulted in piles of trash collected by our Canadians and Youth Spaces members, all excited to clean the surroundings of river Susa.
Patrick Devuyst, the man behind the one and only ‘made in Rwanda’ chocolate, led the workshop on “How to Start and Run a Business/Project”.

photos by Misigaro and Miha Logar