The Chairperson of the National Civic Education Commission, Boniface Rucagu has said that this year’s civic education curriculum will feature courses on the recently introduced concept of “Ndi Umunyarwanda” (“I am a Rwandan”).
The upcoming edition, set to start on November 29 and end in June 2014, will be the second intake of high school-leaving students across Rwanda.
Upon completion, they will be warming up to pursue their studies in universities and other higher learning institutions where they will also continue with civic education.
Through “Ndi Umunyarwanda”, Rwandans are urged to talk about the history that has characterized their country in order to face off the repercussions the same history has caused and prevent other factors that can potentially set Rwandans apart again.
It is expected that 44,000 high school-leaving youngsters will be trained this year, a 7,000 trainees’ increase if compared to 37,000 youngsters who were trained last year.
They will be camping in 81 schools spread across Rwanda’s 30 districts, learning about the core Rwandan values and taboos, among others while also volunteering with different community services in their respective cells.
Apart from getting civic education training, last year’s intake was influential in community outreach, educating local people on how to combat HIV/AIDS and drugs. Participants were also involved in building new roads
Last fall, some parents complained about their children who were not paid for their community services as volunteers.
According to Rucagu it is for the children’s own good. There will be time, he said, when securing a leadership position in Rwanda will require someone to first present their certificates attesting that they received training in civic education.
Under article 47 of the Constitution of the Republic of Rwanda, every Rwandan is required to volunteer in activities geared towards the development of the country. And it is under this very article where lies the requirement for every Rwandan aged from 18 to 35 to participate in the national civic education programme.
Pioneers of the national civic education programme maintain that it is a way of rejuvenating and modernizing what used to happen in the traditional Rwanda, hundreds of years ago.
Young boys used to attend training camps aimed at inculcating in them different cultural values like good manners, integrity, oratory or public speaking as a way of preparing them to become real men while young girls followed a specific training aimed at growing good behaviours and familiarizing them with a number of household duties worth of a good, real woman.