Rwandan Youth Information Community Organisation (rYico) is a UK registered charity based in Brighton. Our mission is to improve the lives of vulnerable young people in Rwanda through supporting access to education, training and information, and to increase understanding of Rwanda’s history and present outside the country. We do this through Centre Marembo, our youth resource in Kigali which supports young people who have been orphaned, neglected or left in very difficult conditions for a variety of reasons.
Projects that changed lives
ABATUJE HOUSE (a place to find peace within) is the only refuge for vulnerable girls in Gasabo District, Kigali City. Centre Marembo is now known in the city as the first point of contact and support place available for women victims of violence. The Refuge not only it comfort the victims of domestic street violence, but it also provides reintegration support back to their home and communities. One nurse and one experienced counsellor in women’s sexual, mental health, and family planning have been recruited.
More girls and young women currently attending Centre Marembo understand the family planning methods that are available in Rwanda. Ongoing recovery has also been made by girls suffering from HIV/AIDS. Centre Marembo has paid for the Annual Rwanda National Health Insurance Cards for 150 direct beneficiaries; these can now access free Rwanda Health services. The insurance cards have brought a real success in tackling their ongoing general health issues and extend their life.
Two women’s co-operatives have been set up to enable 52 graduates from crafts and tailoring courses to generate income and secure jobs. In the area of justice, 6 young girls have obtained justice. Two men are now serving the mandatory 25 years prison sentences after conviction of rape.
Centre Marembo’s original aspirations for working for and with women to empower them has been achieved.
rYico are proud to present: AFRO CONNECT II – World Music and Dub Fundraiser!!! 25th May 2012, The Loft, Ship Street, Brighton. 9pm – 3am. £7 on the door, £6 with a student card.All proceeds go to rYico and our project Keeping Memories: The Rwandan Community in the UK.Following the raging success of our last Afro Connect fundraisers, we’re back again for a night of inspiring tunes and good times! We have a sensational line-up :Kasai Masai http://www.myspace.com/kasaimasai Linos Wengara and Zimbaremabwe Band http://www.zimbaremabwe.org/ Maracatu Cruzeiro do Sul http://www.myspace.com/maracatucruzeirodosul Dubconscious http://soundcloud.com/steppinrizla Selecta Scruffi http://www.myspace.com/selectascruffi The night is part of our event series in preparation for an exhibition of our latest project: Keeping Memories: The Rwandan Community in the UK which will be held at the Jubilee Library from the 6th of June -8th of July 2012. We hope to see you there! rYico launches interactive multimedia exhibition for Keeping Memories: The Rwandan Community in the UK 6th June – 8th July 2012, Jubilee Library, Brighton Taking place during usual library opening hours - Admission Free The Rwandan diaspora tell their own stories and engage the public in innovative ways in rYico’s new exhibition. Keeping Memories: The Rwandan Community in the U.K combines audio, text, photographs and paintings to commemorate the Rwandan past and celebrate the future. The exhibition is part of our two-year Heritage Lottery funded project. Over several months, trained volunteers conducted life story interviews with members of the Rwandan community. The interviews were then developed into an exhibition creatively drawing upon a range of media to best convey the unique perspective of each story. According to rYico Director Vivenie Mugunga, the exhibition is a rare opportunity for Rwandans to tell their stories in their own way: “Members of the Rwandan community in the U.K often feel that there is a great amount of misinformation and misrepresentation about Rwanda and Rwandans out there”. For Mugunga the exhibition is a source of empowerment for the community: “the Rwandan diaspora are given a role to play in telling and keeping their own history as well as representing themselves in the way they would like. Who could tell your story better than yourself?” In telling their stories, participants aim to promote a better understanding of the 1994 Rwandan genocide and preserve the memories of the Rwandan diaspora. The exhibition also explores broader themes of prejudice, ignorance, forgiveness and reconciliation ? encouraging visitors to think deeply about the past as it relates to the present. Andy Boyd returns to Centre Marembo – May 2012 Andy Boyd and his wife Viv Bowra spent 3 months in 2007 working at Centre Marembo supporting the developmentof the centre and running activities with groups of young people. Andy will be returning this May to carry out the monitoring and evaluation element of a new project that is underway supporting vulnerable girls and young women. You can visit Andy’s Justgiving page to read more about the project and to make a dontion to support the project: http://www.justgiving.com/Andy-Viv-Boyd-Bowra. rYico successful in Comic Relief Application – Feb 2012 We are thrilled to announce that rYico has been awarded a grant by Comic Relief develop a project for girls and women at Centre Marembo. Details are still to be finalised and more information will be posted here shortly. rYico successful in Heritage Lottery Application – Dec 2011 We are pleased to announce that rYico has been awarded a grant by the Heritage Lottery Fund to deliver a 2 year project in the UK, named ‘Keeping Memories: The Rwandan Community in the UK’. For more information about the project, please visit our projects page. For latest news and updates, visit our news page.
Shop4Rwanda is rYico’s online shop through which rYico sells products made at Centre Marembo in Kigali. To visit the shop, click here.