Voluntary Services Overseas (VSO), an international development charity, this week welcomed 17 new international volunteers to work in Rwanda, the organization has announced.
A statement from VSO reveals that the new volunteers, with a wide experience in voluntary work, will be working with Rwandan organisations and local authorities to support the Government’s efforts to deliver quality services in the development of the education and health sectors.
VSO which runs international volunteering programmes in over 34 countries around the world has been operating in Rwanda since 1999 in different sectors, especially the education sector, helping Persons with Disabilities, HIV/AIDS projects and supporting the development of Rwandan volunteering programmes.
One of the new volunteers, Gerrit Nijenhuis, a school principal with 35 years of education experience in both Canada and the Netherlands, will be taking up a post in Butare Diocese (EAR Butare) as an Education Management Advisor.
“I’m extremely excited about being in Rwanda, and being given the opportunity to use my experience to contribute to the development of the education sector in Rwanda.” Gerret is quoted in the statement as saying.
Gerret will be one of the 50 international volunteers in Rwanda under VSO who hail from different countries, including the UK, Canada, Ireland, the Netherlands, Uganda, Germany, the US, Australia and the Philippines.
According to the statement, the volunteers are working in many different environments but especially education. The areas they will be working in include District offices, local NGOs, schools and government ministries.
The new volunteers will be supporting education management at district levels, supporting the development of child-friendly methodology at primary and lower secondary levels; focusing on teacher education and on the development of low-cost, locally available teaching resources.
One of the new volunteers Nicole Joussot, a 54–year-old head teacher from the UK is returning to Rwanda for the second time.
In 2008, Joussot spent three months working in the Ecole Primaire Gacuba in Kirehe District.
“My experience last year was incredibly rewarding – it is a very rich experience, working alongside Rwandan colleagues, and learning from them as well as helping them” said Joussot, who has over 30 years of primary teaching and teacher-training experience.
VSO’s Country Director, Mike Silvey says in the statement that the new volunteers will play an important role in the country’s development especially through skills sharing.