NYAMATA - World Vision Rwanda (WVR) monday scooped an international award for its ability to strategically and effectively integrate peace building into its relief, development and advocacy work.
This was during a colorful ceremony that was held in Nyamata, Bugesera district as part of the celebrations to mark the international day of peace which falls on 21st September every year.
The glass-molded award in shape of a flame and US $ 5000 cheque were handed to WVR by World Vision International (WVI).
According to officials, the Rwandan office was commended for using strategic models focused on capacity building and well-respected communal structures to promote healing and reconciliation.
Speaking on behalf of the WVI President, the Africa Chief Operating Officer, Tim Andrews noted that peace is fundamental for any kind of development acknowledging that WVR has played a significant role in peace building.
“Lack of peace and a piece of mind are great contributors to hopelessness but an environment of peace nurtures strength and ability to develop.
“I therefore commend the government of Rwanda for reinforcing peace and WVR for clearly sowing seeds of reconciliation which have built bridges between different people in relation to the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi,” Andrews said.
The Chairman of the National Unity and Reconciliation Commission, Jean Baptiste Habyarimana also acknowledged WVR’s efforts towards enabling citizens to recover from a terrible past.
“WVR has peace building activities that reach all groups of people. Knowing that the youth played a big role in the events of the genocide, it is good that this organization also ensures youth participation in peace building,” Habyarimana underscored.
As he smiled from ear to ear, the WVR National Director, Edward Kalisa, noted that WVR has focused on truth telling and reconciliation which have brought survivors, released prisoners, mediators, teachers and church leaders together.
He however noted that this is not the end of the road pledging that the organization will do a lot more towards the peace building goal.
Genocide survivors and perpetrators gave testimonies of reconciliation at the function.
Meanwhile, Kids for peace of World Vision Kosovo also received the same award for efforts regarding peace building.
Andrews explained that the peace prize is awarded in honour and memory of Steve Williams, a Senior Policy Advisor on Peace and Conflict in World Vision United Kingdom. He unexpectedly died in December 2007.
The flame trophy is called a harmony flame that illustrates a passion for peace.