On Thursday 8th April 2021, the team of Japanese volunteers paid a courtesy call to the Minister of State for East African Community Affairs in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs,Prof. Nshuti Manasseh.
The team was accompanied by ambassador of Japan in Rwanda, Masahiro Imai and Maruo Shin, the chief representative of JICA Rwanda.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs revealed that they discussed, among others, bilateral relations and the JICA resuming the Japan Overseas Cooperation Volunteers’ activities in Rwanda.
Rwanda registered 44 volunteers from Japan as of March 2020 who returned home as Coronavirus emerged.
Despite their return, JOCV continued to assist Rwandan residents virtually.
These volunteers arrived again in Rwanda on 3rd April 2021 expected to resume their activities in the districts of Kayonza, Kirehe, Musanze, Ngoma and Rwamagana effective from Friday 9th April 2021.
These volunteers also visited Kigali Genocide Memorial yesterday morning where they paid respect to the victims of the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi in solidarity with the people of Rwanda during this commemoration period.
JICA has released a statement showing that resuming volunteerism activities is entrenched on the fact that Rwanda has made giant and promising strides towards fighting COVID-19.
Japan volunteers started activities in Rwanda in 1987 through JICA. These activities halted in 1993 and resumed after 12 years in 2005.
A total of 300 youth volunteers from Japan in the age bracket of 20 and 30 have so far involved in volunteer activities in Rwanda with major interventions in proper maintenance of water and sanitation infrastructures, building capacity for coffee farmers and promoting science based education among others.