A physiotherapist ruling the radio: Meet KFM presenter Cynthia Umurungi

Briefly can you introduce yourself? I am 27 years old. I was born in Burundi. I am the first born in a family of three and my parents are Patricie and Venuste Munyerangwe.

Briefly can you introduce yourself?

I am 27 years old. I was born in Burundi. I am the first born in a family of three and my parents are Patricie and Venuste Munyerangwe.

I attended part of my primary school in Burundi and immediately after the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi, I came back to Rwanda where I continued my primary education at APE Rugunga. I went to IFAK secondary school where I took Biology and Chemistry and later joined Kigali Health Institute where I studied Physiotherapy. I am currently pursuing a Masters in Business Administration at Mt Kenya University.

What is your childhood dream? And are you living it?

When I was young I never had any dream in particular. But when I reached twelve years of age I wanted to be the kind of woman who had an impact on society by promoting and marketing products made by poor people.

I am not there yet but recently, I started doing promotions for local people inside and outside the country

Your first degree was in physiotherapy, you are practicing journalism and you are taking Masters in Business Administration. What is the force driving you in all these directions?

I have many things to do at the same time. I don’t know what that force is but I believe that it’s there and it’s driving me crazy.

In 2005, during my senior six holidays one of my friends convinced me that I had a talent of influencing people and so he introduced me to the media family. I started working with Radio Flash and then Contact FM, which was a good experience. Currently, I am working with KFM radio station.

By the time I completed university I was already working in the media and media is such an interesting field that you can’t easily leave it, especially when you have the talent for it. I love it because it helps me express myself.

What are the challenges you meet on a day to day basis?

The main challenges I face are professional. People don’t easily believe in you when you are a woman. The rest of the challenges I face are the normal day-to day things that everyone goes through.

Some people think I should go to the hospital and start treating people but this is not how I see it.

I want to bring something new. Personally, my dream as a physiotherapist is to have a professional gym that encourages pregnant women and those going through the post-natal phase to attend it. But it’s very expensive.

In the media, there are millions of things that need to be done. But being a woman, regardless of your qualification, you need to work harder than your male counterpart to prove that you can perform.

What do you think are the greatest challenges that Rwandan women face?

The hardest challenge we face is that some people make us believe that we can’t do this or that and I think some of us don’t believe in our capabilities.

Apart from some girls who are still struggling with some work at home while their brothers are schooling, the rest should be capable of doing what their brothers can.

How do you spend your leisure time?

I used to have some spare time but that was before I joined the National Youth Council. Today my schedule is so tight because after joining the Council I also joined the National Unity and Reconciliation Commission where I am a Commissioner.

But whenever I can, I go swimming, travelling, to the gym and hanging out with friends.

What is your current relationship status?

My Facebook status says ‘it’s complicated’. But I tend to say I am single. I don’t know if I will ever get enough time to go searching.

What is your message to Rwandan women?

Recently I was reading some reports saying that Niger is one of the best countries that you would like to be if you are a woman because they look at different things to improve the economic and social status in the society.

In Rwanda, we are where we are because of the leadership of our country. The leadership understands that women’s involvement is essential for the country’s development. Everything is there for us if we believe in our potential and capability.

 

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