Out of school youth have been hailed on good public speech skills.
Urujeni Bakuramutsa, the Director General of Imbuto Foundation hailed the youth following a debate competition held at Hilltop Hotel in Kigali, from 27 to 28 July.
The debate competition came as a successful end to the debate programme that was initiated by Imbuto Foundation, in partnership with Global Humanitarian and Development Foundation (GHDF).
The Rwanda Speaks programme was created as an effort to continue significant progress in promoting advancing gender equality; improve ability of youth to speak publicly; vocalizing and expressing ideas and thoughts clearly through cultivating the culture of critical thinking and public speaking skills among out of school youths from 18 youth centres and hostels, namely Huye, Nyanza, Nyamasheke, Muhanga, Rusizi, Bugesera, Ngororero, Nyagatare, Ngoma, Rubavu, Rutsiro, Rulindo, Kimisagara, Kabuga, Kayonza, Kiramurizi/Isangano, Nyamagabe Peak Itorero youth Center and AERG youth hostel.
The Rwanda Speaks debate competition was organised for the participating youth centres and hostels, as a means to showcase their debating skills.
“Debating is about enhancing public speech among the youth but also about engaging in the subjects that are changing the country today. Debate is also about changing oneself through research and it not only empowers oneself with that knowledge but also others. I saw passion and focus among the participants,” Bakuramutsa said.
During her remarks, Bakuramutsa also encouraged the youth to challenge themselves to ensure a better Rwanda in the future.
Patrick Karangwa, the Chief Executive of GHDF, noted that the debate sought to engage the youth creatively in developing their own solutions, within their communities and local authorities, as well as engaging marginalised youth.
“We started the debate in partnership with Imbuto Foundation as a way of empowering young people to negotiate, do research but also understand the culture exchange which means we also want the young people to talk to each other, discuss in a very tolerant way.
Young people are the future of this nation and we think that if they are empowered at a very young stage, it will help us have a brighter future for the youth today which is why we wanted to engage the youth in and out of school,” Karangwa said.
The debate competition featured various topics, namely: “Unemployment of youth in Rwanda is caused by laziness”, “Condoms should be distributed in schools as a measure to fight HIV/AIDS among youth”, and the topic featured in the finale was: “The youth working in cooperatives is the best way for Rwanda to develop.”
AERG youth hostel were crowned the champions of the competition, followed by Rubavu youth centre, Nyagatare youth centre and Kabuga youth centre in the second, third and fourth positions respectively.