Agencies partner to boost vocational training in rehab centres

The Director General, WDA, Pascal Gatabazi and Director General of National Rehabilitation Service, Aime Bosenibamwe sign an agreement of Cooperation. (Craish Bahizi)

The National Rehabilitation Service (NRS), Workforce Development Authority (WDA) and Rwanda Polytechnic have entered a deal that is expected to foster sustainable and quality vocational training in rehabilitation centres across the country.

Under a two year renewable deal, NRS will among others provide all necessary financial resources to facilitate the trainers; while WDA will assist in monitoring and evaluation of the implementation of TVET standards in NRS.

On the other hand, Rwanda Polytechnic will among others offer in-service training to youth in rehabilitation centres in various fields to develop their technical and vocational skills.

“We are going to work together as one, and make sure we train youth in rehabilitation centers relevantly towards sustainable development,” James Gashumba, Vice Chancellor of Rwanda Polytechnic, said at the event.

Pascal Gatabazi, Director General of WDA also said that: “We are all concerned with our Rwandan youth, and we are ready to set standards and go fourth to inspect if the set standards are being abided to.”

How significant is the MoU?

So far, in Rwanda there are three public rehabilitation centres; Nyamagabe, Gitagata and Iwawa Rehabilitation and Vocational Skills Development Centre.

Iwawa is the only rehab centre having vocational trainings, whereas others will commence these trainings in January next year.

The provided skills include; masonry, carpentry, crop production, tailoring and other skills like hair dressing, culinary art, domestic electricity that are yet to be inaugurated in Nyamagabe and Gitagata centres.

“There was no formal cooperation between us and these institutions (WDA and Rwanda Polytechnic). This affected us because everyone was doing his own things, hence we couldn’t tell if what we are teaching is relevant to what is on the market,” said Aime Bosenibamwe, Director General of NRS.

He added that they will now be discharged from the centres as reformed people ready to be integrated in society, but also who have standardized skills that will help them compete favourably on the labour market.

Since 2011, Iwawa Rehabilitation and Vocational Skills Development Centre, has handled over 19,000 delinquents, while the Bugesera-based Gitagata Rehabilitation Centre, which is exclusively for women and children, has received over 1,000 children, according to NRS.

Read alsoOver 1600 youths graduate from rehab institute

For Nyamagabe rehabilitation centre, considering it was opened in June this year, the first cohort of 1,000 delinquents is yet to graduate.

“Government spends a lot of money in rehabilitation centers, which we think should produce returns; by these rehabilitated people being productive on job market,” Bosenibamwe added.

Government has allocated Rwf5.2 billion to NRS for the 2019/2020 fiscal year.

Read alsoNational rehabilitation service needs Rwf600m deficit for delinquents

The three bodies agreed to design a joint implementation plan that will guide their cooperation going forward.