As the 2011 Cultural Week kicked off on Monday, optimism among exhibitors dealing in cultural artefacts is high because of increase in business.
The exhibition of cultural arts and crafts is taking place at the Remera Indoor arena, next to Amahoro National Stadium. The event was organised by the Ministry of Youth, Sports and Culture.
Effective this year, the Cultural Week will become an annual event.
Modeste Nzayisenga, a cultural psychotherapist from Rwanda Cultural Health Centre, says his services will be popularised through the expo.
“I help the community in self realisation, symbolic thoughtfulness and wisdom inside their culture,” he said.
He further explains that, unlike popular belief, the majority of the population seeks cultural-based health services and believes more in cultural medicine than in conventional methods.
Nzayisenga added that the cultural week is a good initiative for Rwandans to showcase their products and promote culture.
Another exhibitor, Shadrach Kayiranga of Ivuka Art Studio, said that he was hopeful that Rwandans would appreciate their home-made artwork through the week.
“It’s not often that we get a chance to showcase our products for free. With this kind of exposure, we are destined to enhance our business among Rwandans and foreigners interested in Rwandan art and culture,” explained Kayiranga.
Also on display are drugs made by traditional herbalists associations (all registered by the Ministry of Health) that treat a variety of diseases such as liver, stomachaches, worms, among others.
All of the drugs are made from natural ingredients like roots, leaves, stems and fruits.
A specialist from Abaharanira Ubuzima, Leocadia Mukarugagi, said that people are at times scared of using traditional herbs yet they are more effective than conventional medicine.
“The cultural week will give us exposure and a chance to explain to Rwandans the effectiveness of our herbs,” Mukarugagi said.