KARONGI — An official of ADRA has said women were more capable of bringing about solutions to post conflict problems than men, but were on several occasions denied the chance to prove their ability.
Patrick Mphaka was speaking last week at the launch of ADRA programme dubbed ‘Women in Post Conflict Situations (WIPS)’ in Karongi District. The project aims at rallying women behind peace and reconciliation efforts.
"We have come to discover that women have got a listening ear and are ever restless until they find solutions to problems basically after a conflict," said Mphaka who is also the project manager.
He added that they chose to work with women because of their parental care and resilience during and after conflict compared to their male counterparts.
"Through talks and communications we have held with people in Karongi District we have discovered that there are still misunderstandings between the Genocide survivors and the former killers yet they are neighbours," said Mphaka.
He observed that this was the reason people are not free to talk about their past though the project has a radio programme.
The WIPS programme that runs on Radio Rwanda every Sunday features Genocide survivors who have managed to overcome their bitter past memories and develop themselves. The programme enables them to share their experiences so that they can inspire others. In Western Province, the project works in Karongi and Nyamasheke districts.
During the launch, some women who had overcome trauma were present to help show others how to go about it. "I have learnt to love and live with the situation in which I am, I thank God for having survived," said Odette Mujawabera.
In the meantime, WIPS gave out over 37 solar radios to radio listening committees of the programme so that they could follow up the programmes and contribute as necessary.
"These radios should be taken as something essential; before the 1994 Genocide, they were the tools used to incite violence," an official said of the radios.
The official advised residents to effectively use the provided radios to eradicate genocide ideology and any related vices.
The programme will as well involve counseling and showing the truth to people with the genocide ideology. "We want people who feel that peace can never prevail in Rwanda to give us their reasons after which we shall have debates and counseling," said Mphaka.
The project intended to end in September 2009 has been focusing on war and post war situations, particularly on how women are involved in recovery programmes. It has sister branches in Burundi and DR Congo.