A new mobile application that will help collect funds for elderly Genocide survivors from individuals’ mobile phone airtime helped raise Rwf1.33m during its launch on Thursday.
The Minister for Youth and ICT, Jean Philbert Nsengimana, officially launched the “TECH Support Incike Initiative”.
The aim of the app created and initiated by young ICT entrepreneurs is to help raise money for “incike” Genocide survivors who are above 70 years of age and unable to support themselves. It will also help pay tuition for survivor students who were not privileged to continue with their university education due to lack of tuition fees.
Patrick Buchana, a journalist with The New Times, and Aphrodice Mutangana are the ICT entrepreneurs behind the app.They said the idea was conceived after realising the plight of elderly survivors.
“We visited two elderly survivors. One called Antoine Iyakaremye, 81, lives in a leaking house while the other, Caritas Nyiragakara, had nine children but eight of them were killed during the Genocide, while the other was raped and infected with HIV/Aids. She passed on in 2000. We felt there could be many more living in such dilemma and in need of help,” Mutangana said.
Odette Kayirere, the executive secretary of the association of Genocide widows (Avega-Agahozo), who spoke on behalf of the beneficiaries thanked the young ICT entrepreneurs, saying the cause will help solve the plight of the elderly Genocide survivors.
Minister Nsengimana commended the initiative, noting that it is through such acts that the youth can meaningfully contribute to the development of society.
He also urged the youth to think beyond money by extending love to the needy.
How the app works
The application enables someone to automatically contribute Rwf50, Rwf65 or Rwf100 on a daily basis by dialing *654# on their mobile phones for all networks. It officially begins to work next Monday, April 14.
Mobile phone subscribers registered with Tigo cash can also contribute by dialing *200*1*20568# while MTN Mobile Money customers can dial 0788520122
People outside Rwanda can also contribute to the cause through the bank account number 00059-0641589-44 in the Bank of Kigali, which is jointly owned by Avega and Genocide student survivors association (AERG).
Tigo offered free communication to the two young ICT entrepreneurs, while the Ministry of Youth and ICT pledged to fund all gatherings under this initiative as long as they do not exceed 200 people.