The National Itorero Commission has appealed to the government, private institutions and the civil society to set aside a budget for volunteer activities.
It says this will help strengthen voluntary work in the country’s development.
The Commission announced this at a forum convened to release its four-year performance report and a five year action plan.
Over one million Rwandans have so far participated in the activities of Itorero, where they learnt Rwandan values and norms.
“We are mainly looking for positive thinking among Rwandan citizens; we want to model Rwandans who are eager to always do better, an enlightened and patriotic Rwandan,” said Boniface Rucagu, the chairperson of National Itorero Commission(NIC).
Rucagu stressed the relevancy of volunteerism and patriotism in the country’s development.
The initiative started in November 2012 with 35,000 secondary school leavers who were involved in community work and sensitisation campaigns in communities.
They sensitised the public on HIV/Aids, corruption and drug abuse, health insurance, and family planning, among other things.
In addition, they contributed to the fight against soil erosion, constructed cell offices, and other infrastructure, and built houses for the needy.
Most of the activities were done in collaboration with members of the beneficiary communities.
Five-year public works plan
Samuel Sembagare, the Mayor of Burera District underscored the importance of youth voluntary activities.
“For the five months that the youth spent in Burera, they helped the community in many things: We had committed to complete construction of 20 cell offices, and we achieved it withing the set timeframe. If it wasn’t for their hand, we wouldn’t have made it,” he said.
Senator Speciose Ayinkamiye, from a consulting company that designed the NIC’s five year action plan, said ‘government institutions, the private sector and the civil society should draw a budget and plan volunteer activities so that it becomes an integral part of development agenda.”