Our Rotaractors Keep Taking Service Beyond Boarders!

We promised, and we are back here with yet another tale of October 2017.

On the 14th of October, members of the Rotaract Club of Kigali City hit the road for yet, the return visit to our partners in service, the Rotaract club of Kabale Community (D9212). If you have kept up with us, we left our mark in this town when we launched a joint project with Rotaract Kabale sometime back in 2016. So, we were back to visit children taken care of by the Kabale Regional Referral Hospital. You must be wondering what could possibly be special with these children, I mean we left children back home.

Well, these children bravely living with HIV, and our chosen place was to sit beside them for a day, share a meal with them and listen to their stories.

Sometimes it takes more than the need to reenergize or get treatment for them, speaking to a group of jolly good fellows like the one we carried with us is another beginning to a new season.

We can only be thankful and honored to be a part of such a noble project, but also applaud our sister club, the Rotaract club of Kabale Community for the advocacy they have done for these children. During this project, something even more special happened, the youth in Kabale launched an association that they called, “Youth Living Positive with HIV”.  Now these are the people that brought reality to these children as they shared their own stories, reminding the children that they are not alone and besides, living with HIV doesn’t imply death.  Some of the children seemed to be living a dream when the youth mentioned that that they are also living with HIV.

When the representative of the hospital rose up to speak to Rotaractors, she applauded the thought about the children and the initiative to support especially those children. While reminding parents that living with HIV has not reduced a thing from these children, she urged them to support the HIV positive children just like the rest of the children.

“Being HIV positive has not rendered these children unable to do anything their fellow children can do. But they need constant support. Parents, support your children in every way you can and remind them that they deserve equal rights like their colleagues” – Sr. Akurut Christine, the Principal nursing officer at the Kabale regional referral hospital.

Besides maintaining a balanced diet for the children, parents were also reminded not to give these children heavy work at home, to ensure that they keep a health status.

And that marked the end of our first round of the Kabale episode. Off we went to nurture our adventurous spirits. We couldn’t wait to be off to the famous Lake Bunyonyi where we spent our entire afternoon. But as even as we have fun, there is always a lot learn, for instance only a few among us knew about the “banished island” where girls would be taken in abandonment because of carrying a pregnancy before marriage.

 

A lazy early Sunday morning for the Kigali City members but when called to service, you must be at your best. By around 9am or 10am (pardon the poor memory), we set off with our fellow Rotaractors of Kabale to the Batwa site for another impacting order of the week. This time, a good 4-hour ride through forests and downhill was the highlight of our project.

If I am to tell the entire story of the status of the Batwa’s lifestyle, that maybe until the chicken come home. But, I must say it’s one project that humbled many of us. It is one place that can teach anyone to embrace the gift of civilization and the opportunity of having helpful people.

Apart from providing basic utilities and clothes that we gathered from our own Rotaractors, we also had a medical camp for the Batwa. Thanks to doctors from Rotaract KISH who offered their expertise to the patients while we offered our assistance wherever we were needed. It was fun filled day playing football thanks to Rotaractor Alex Mugabe and sharing candy with the children. Again, there was a lot to learn and be inspired from.

Evening came we were back to Kabale town and, we, the Kigali people were on our way back to the land of a thousand hills after a tiresome though impactful weekend not forgetting the fun; the Slay Kings and Queens know what am talking about.

To everyone that rolled with us, we can never say thank you enough! We would rather say, see you all till next time.

Editorial Team, RCKC

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DIABETIC FUNDRAISER

October 2017 came and went. But as for the Rotaract club of Kigali City, it didn’t leave us the same. But to keep your anxiety levels at a good level, we shall give you details in bits.

So here goes our first episode. The day was Saturday 7th October, 2017. The Rotaract Club of Nateete Kampala was in town for a joint project dubbed diabetic fundraiser talent show with theme “Making a Difference with Talent”.

The aim of the fundraiser was to raise funds to purchase sewing machines for the diabetic children. Schools with Interact clubs showcased the best of their talents in categories of Music, Poetry, Dance, Drama, Art and Modelling. Green Hills Academy, Kagarama Secondary School, King David Academy and New Life Christian School participated in this noble cause.

11 am clocked and the games began (not games of thrones). Lawd!! These young Interactors just know how to open a show! One could think they do it for a living. Poetry and singing were the event starters and the rhymes that were being thrown around on stage, the sweet voices swaying around all corners in the room soothing our ears was just something else. Full of energy!!

Lunch!! The one thing that is always on everyone’s mind. Well we gotta survive right? Friends I tell you just the aroma would fill hour stomach in a second. After that refresher of 30 mins we were back at it with the games. It goes without saying, credits to the MC of the day, none other than, Teacher Rtr Fredricks Kaweesi from the Rotaract Club of SFB Kigali for his energy and smooth running of the show.

Aheem! I must say this session was just another level with the scenes, even the MC himself went quiet for a while.

The drama from New Life High School (future king and queens), traditional dance from Kagarama (just hire them), modelling from Green Hills (just sign them up) and art from King David (order for their pieces) were the main highlights of the day. Very creative and artistic minds filled the room with such robust energy. Hahaha!! I recall the judges asking for time out.  These guys also!

The Interact club of Kagarama Secondary School came out the overall winners!

We must mention that without the cooperation from the management of these schools, we wouldn’t have registered any success of raising support to children living with Diabetes.

To our main partners, the Rotaract Club of Nateete Kampala, thank you for choosing to spend your weekend with such style and nobility. And to all our partners and sponsors; the Rotaract clubs of SFB Kigali, KIE, Inyenyeri, Kampala North, the Rotary club of Kigali Virunga, KiPharma, Rwanda Diabetes Associations and Bralirwa, we can’t thank you enough.

To the individual involvement of our Assistant District Governor (ADG), CPP Masterjerb Birungi Paul, thank you for all the support and Service Above Self.

As for you and I, let’s wait for the next episode and show off what we can give best to such a cause. Till then, watch out what else we are up to.

Cheers!

World Tourism Day

Weeks back, we had the opportunity to participate in a tourism promoting project. We clicked a few pictures of the amazing land of a thousand hills. We were privileged to partner with the Rotaract Club of Andheri, District 3141 all the way from India. Yeah!!

The Rotaract club of Andheri managed to compile a video displaying the different beautiful sites that are worth a visit in India, and they had involvement of their sister clubs as well; Pune, Chandizarh and Delhi. All credits to the designer. It was themed “JEWELS OF INDIA“. Follow the following link for the video… https://drive.google.com/open?id=0BxYiU7OaK8nBaV9XOGlQTF94VFU

“It is said to travel is to truly live and we the Rotaract Club of Andheri believe in that philosophy, thus we bring you yet another project as we celebrate world tourism day. Do visit this beautiful country of ours” Rotaractors from Andheri.

How beautiful that country is, and as soon the opportunity knocks at our door steps we will definitely visit.

But before we go, feed yourselves with some of the beautiful scenes of our own land of a thousand hills, our beloved country. A country worth your visit and time and our theme was “DISCOVER RWANDA”.

Check out some of the photos of our belle country (Rwanda Nziza) and do pay us a visit.

 

Editorial Team, RCKC.

Celebrating Our Uniqueness to Attract Like Minded People to Rotaract.

Rotaract, through Rotary has had its own way of framing both the world we live in and the like minded human beings that belong to the global Rotary International family. 

Throughout the month of August, and probably the entire year, clubs always work tooth and nail to reach out to more potential members of the family and find better ways of keeping them grounded. (Feel free to call this ‘retaining them’).But this is not all it should take.

Every year, the Rotaract club of Kigali City takes off time to celebrate the individuals that have made things happen through the entire year. You may agree with me that without our clubs’ members, without their unique talents,time and dedication to make their hands dirty, there would be nothing like success for any of these clubs. 

All this and the impact it makes on our local communities calls for regular celebration and not simply of our achievements, (because the world, through clubs’ respective communities celebrate these even better), but because of the amazing individuals that willingly chose to belong to our clubs, and bring the best out of what they can deliver.

While we all joined Rotaract for different motives, each one of us mostly stayed because of the value and satsfaction it adds their lives. This could come in form of the impact made by our efforts to different lives, being a part of a decision making chain (make no mistake to underlook it, it’s a biggie for some), and the power of networking at a global level; creating contacts in different parts of the world that sometimes culminate into great friendships, relationships and business partners, among others. Rotaract has given us an opportunity to qualify for these and so many others with no boundaries.

However, we can’t do it solo, because ‘all of us’ will always be better than ‘each of us’. So as we all strive to enjoy the benefits of being attached to this amazing group of people, we all ought to take up a challenge. To look beyond the names of our clubs and the projects we have undertaken or plan to, and instead switch our focus to each and every member of our clubs. And then celebrate what they have been able to bring to the club’s table of success…without a single paycheque for their actions, and yet with a lot of passion.

It only takes a dedicated team of Rotaractors, who are proud of the results of their weekly meetings to inspire other potential Rotaractors join the ‘Service Above Self’ crew. And once they do, a grand entrance into the club is all they deserve, and this is our duty as members of the club. If we strive to make this one memorable, they will actually forget the option of ever taking the exit.

As a matter of fact, this will influence their decision to stay and tell our story to their friends far and wide.  So let’s get to work, let’s win hearts. Let’s support Rotary International’s theme of ‘Membership and New Club Development’ . The more we are, the merrier, but also the more ability to create a remarkable difference in this world.

Ends

By; Norryn Busingye, Charter President of the Rotaract Club of Kigali City (Kigali, Rwanda)

Ushering in our 6th President in style – The Installation that was!

 

 

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In IPP Yegoshaa (C)’s last moments as President, President Roger (L) couldn’t contain the happiness while the Guest of Honor Gabriel Ekman (R) seemed to be enjoying himself.

On a beautiful Saturday evening, the 8th of July 2017, the Kigali weather was in full agreement with the members of the Rotaract Club of Kigali City as they gathered with fellow Rotaractors and friends of the club at Gorillas Hotel, Nyarutarama. The occasion was none other than witnessing the crowning of the 6th President Elect-then, Roger Gasore. Or let’s say, they had come together to bear witness of IPP Yego Amos (who we shall call IPP Yegoshaa)’s peaceful handover of the mantle of the club’s leadership.

 

Along the streets of the city, members running here and there in search of suits and evening dresses to grace the main occasion and checking to be sure that all is in good shape. The President Elect was one living example of what we are talking about here.

As soon as it was full house, the MCs of the day started their work on a high, getting some of the guests show off their God-given talent. It’s a good thing we had issued a prior warning to all guests not to leave their dancing shoes behind because CP Norryn’s ‘Joke Box’  started off the night’s activities, involving just about everyone (Okay, apart from those that hailed from the high table; and trust me they are still sending thank you-notes for leaving them out). It was both entertaining and educating; some people actually took notes to keep track of the new moves.

By the time President Yegoshaa arose for his last address as the President of the Rotaract Club of Kigali City, all guests had been treated to enough laughter to keep their ribs hurting. He appreciated the fantastic board that worked with him to make the Rotary year 2016-2017 a successful one in the club’s history. In his own words, the President (again, for the last time), appreciated the effort and time invested by each of the board members to ensure that they deliver to the best of their ability in the club responsibilities.

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“I would like to appreciate this team of noble men and women, the entire membership of this club and our sister clubs in Rwanda. It’s because of your efforts along with the support from our various sponsors that we made it to the finish line. Without you all, we wouldn’t have achieved as much”Outgoing President Amos Yego said during his final remarks.

Our Guest of Honor for the day was Gabriel Ekman, a 26 year old gentleman with a background in Project Management and Strategic Communications. He is a Swedish entrepreneur and Managing Director of Bag Innovation, a startup that empowers University students to take up consultancy services for local and international NGOs and assists companies to generate valuable growth for the youth in the company.

By now you know we had just the right person to address the service minded men and women that had joined us this evening, right?

Gabriel lauded the Rwandan youth for their passion for the development of their community and urged Rotaractors to use this as a foundation and develop a new way of thinking, new ideas and creativity in everything they do.

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“When you get a new idea, take a risk and develop your idea with a sense of creativity so that it provides a unique solution from what already exists. Let it stand out from the usual.”Gabriel Ekman remarked as he inspired Rotaractors and their guests.

At this time, all guests are anxiously waiting for the crowning of the man of the evening, a very young man who has already shown us the capability to take the Rotaract club of Kigali City. With the help of Rotarian Thomas Kinyua, IPP Yegoshaa peacefully handed over the instruments of power to now, President Roger Gasore (Drumrolls) who immediately took to the podium.

The President had a little something for everyone as he shared about his journey as a Rotaractor alongside other leadership experience.

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“I always believe that my purpose as a person is to make a difference in someone’s life, creating in them a positive impact that will leave them motivated” – President Roger said while giving the main speech of the day.

The President shared that his inspiration is the story of the humming bird that he heard from the late Wangari Mathaai. In this story, a forest was burning down and all the animals just stood by and watched it burn. But the humming bird was flying to and fro the river with a droplet of water to put out the fire. The other animals startled, told the humming bird how crazy it is to think that it could put out that fire with just a droplet of water, and it humbly responded that it’s just doing its best.

As a moral of the story, President Roger urged everyone to always try their best to make a difference and impact lives out there positively.

The beautiful event was ended on a high with an awesome presentation from the hosts themselves, the members of the Rotaract club of Kigali City! And then…the Presidential dance opening up the dance floor, featuring none other than the beautiful Vice President.  My dear, this was just to confirm that we have no two-left legged humans among us. And yes, because you asked, we shall of course line up another show soon.

After a long night of fun, both RCKC and Rotaract Kabale members couldn’t get their heads up on Sunday morning until it was midday. And this was the beginning of sightseeing around the beautiful city of Kigali until we saw them off! Thank you Rotaract Kabale for always rolling with us!

And the rest of you, watch out for the year of awesomeness…Powered by the Rotaract Club of Kigali City!

Enjoy some of the moments that we shared at that awesome event.

 

 

 

Through Service Above Self, we stand with the children at Marembo centre.

 

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Rotaractors showing off their little buddies at the Marembo Children’s Centre, Ndera Village

On a sunny Saturday morning of the 1st April 2017, all roads for Rotaractors both in Rwanda along with our guests from the Rotaract Club of  Kabale (that for some reason we shall call ‘the land of 100 hills’) were leading to Centre Marembo in Ndera village in the outskirts of Kigali.

Rotaractors from the land of 100 hills started off this day in the land of a thousand hills in the name of service to the community. It was great excitement for many as they had anticipated their visit to the beautiful city of Kigali for a couple of months.  Back in Kigali the Rotaractors from the Rotaract Club of Kigali city were busy running up and down looking for ‘chakula’ to cook for the beautiful children at the centre. And others patiently waiting for the people from Kabale to welcome them.

…Now for those who turned up early, what I am about to say will make a lot of sense…

All was going well until, well, as the saying goes, ‘never let a woman be your compass to a certain destination otherwise you’ll get lost’. I am  actually  not sure of the sources but I because I heard the same from a Rotarian(wink wink), let’s take it as a gospel truth.

Guess what, Rotaractors did get lost and found themselves in other people’s shambas and yet directions given before were clear(let’s not mention names here), but that’s just the tip of the ice berg. That was not enough, even those tasked to guide the Rotaractors from Kabale got lost who knows where and how till some few hours later, a rescue crew was sent to collect them. They really set the ice breaker for the day’s event. So, the inside story on this one could be for another day, perhaps one of those fine Fridays you may show up for our weekly fellowship at Zuri Restaurant.

Rotaractors from Kabale  finally arrived along with the rest, and we received them with warm hugs, laughter and excitement. Wow! the children from Centre Marembo were full of joy waiting for what’s ahead. As Rotaractors offloaded the children’s package from the truck, the children were kept in anticipation of what would we got for them in stock. 

Welcoming remarks from the Assistant Director of the centre kicked off the day, and our Community Service Director, aka, project manager took us through the agenda of the day. This officially opened up a bunch of fun filled activities through the entire day with the wonderful children. Rotaractors took charge, split up into groups, with some to play with the kids and others in charge of the ‘chakula’ in the kitchen. (Maximum respect to the latter, they always make crowds speak in tongues). 

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The most important crew of the day. Well as some of us would say

What’s that aroma, yum yum, ahh it’s the kitchen. All was going well with the ‘chakula’ even as the quality of firewood played tricks of  refreshing our cooking skills, slowing down the whole process. (But you see, lest you say we are bad workmen blaming it on the tools, we leave this one here).

The idea of games was very brilliant as the fun crew managed to keep children busy as tried to beat the lunch timeline. Speaking of games, the day was marked by a serios eating competition with Rotaractors represented by the delegate from the Rotaract Club of Karura – Kenya (Ibaze nawe!).  Unfortunately the young girls were so talented in dancing to this tune of eating that they took all the fans to their side and they managed to beat Rotaractors and took the prize.

 

As food was served,  the project manager  felt a huge relief as she had started feeling pressure piling up on her with more than 100 hunger craving youths. But the Pilau, Chapatti, and wait for it…meat was just worth the wait and awesome for everybody. Not excluding the ‘matumbo crew’ – these they will introduce themselves later.

At sunset, with everyone tire of the games and celebrating the crew’s cooking skills, it was time to say the sad goodbyes to the children. Testimonies and words of encouragement closed the day.

“We would like to appreciate the management of Marembo Centre for allowing us to spend our day with the children. We would never have asked for any better way of spending our day. In the same spirit of Service Above Self, thank you Rotaract Kabale for walking with us in the journey of making a difference in these children’s lives.” – President Amos Yego aka Yegoshaa as remarked as we bid farewell to the hosting team.

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And au revoir, as Rotaractors hugged and said their goodbyes to the  children.

Our appreciation goes to all our sponsors for their contribution and participation in this project. Without each of you, the success of this project would still be in the pipeline.

Thank you to AC GROUP(Tap and Go cards), the Rotary Club of Doyen, the Rotary club of Kigali-Virunga, Rotaract Club Kabale-Uganda, Rotaract Club KIE, Rotaract Club SFB-Kigali, Rotaract Club Karura-Kenya, Rotaract club Nairobi Central, Rotary Club Kampala Central and Interactors from Kagarama. And to our own International Service Director (the man himself, aka Deno), for going out if his way to facilitate us with transport. And to our very own, the members of the Rotaract club of Kigali City,  you are the best crew ever! You all demonstrated Service Above Self.

Wait, it’s not yet over. In appreciation of everyone that was still around, the after-project (because service comes along with fun), was in one of Gisimenti famous joints and what happened there stayed there my friends. Late in the nights the beautiful people from Kabale recalled that they had to go back home and they randomly set back on their journey safely. (And ladies and gentlemen, this is when we learnt that they are cool like that). 

About Marembo Centre

Centre Marembo is a centre for young girls of ages below 18years that have undergone child abuse, child neglect and rape by their own family members. The centre accommodates over 75 kids who have been picked from the streets by the government and given assistance in recovering from this trauma through counselling and psychological assistance. Every child deserves a right to be loved, to shelter, food family and education, and in respect to this, the Rotaract Club of Kigali City and the Rotaract Club of Kabale – Uganda joined hands to spend time with the young girls at the center and have fun with them through games, sharing experiences and testimonies from both sides along with words of encouragement.

Nothing ever pays back like a day spent creating a smile on somebody else’ face! And ours was a big pay checque!

Spelling bee(bee emogi) coming soon.

 

The author is the President Elect of the Rotaract Club of Kigali City (2017-2018)

 

Service Without Boarders: Joint Project with Rotaract Club of Kabale (D9211)

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Rotaractors on arrival at the Kabale Regional Referral Hospital

“I must say this is a great start for our two clubs. If we can seal off this project today, then the Kigali session will be even greater. Thank you Rotaract club of Kabale for allowing us to be part of this noble treat for the children.”  – Amos Yegosha – President, Rotaract Kigali City (2016-2017)

November 25, 2016 – On a  chilly Friday evening, in the name of service to the world -the very ambition of Rotary International, – members from the Rotaract club of Kigali City, in the massive company of the Rotaract club of SFB-Kigali invaded the hilly Kabale region.

The purpose for this trip was none other than joining the partners in service, the Rotaract club of Kabale Community based in making time to reach out to the needy children of the Kabale Regional Referral Hospital. This time was round the choice was made on those children who have been infected by HIV. Well, not that you would tell if I didn’t mention, because the smiles on their faces leaves nothing behind but life and hope.  But listening to the stories they tell, that’s when you realise that the problems you face may sometimes be an opportunity on the other side of life.

So well, team Kigali City was led by the man himself, President Amos Yego (you can actually call him Yegoshaa, lately it features on his National ID anyway). The  Kigali-Kabale trek that started on Friday evening ended at a destination that seemed unknown to many of them (well, at least until Saturday, 3 am). Our journey was full of nothing but adventure; starting from the private jet’s to the mesmerising story authored by one of our very own members (let’s call him ‘freedom fighter’). I will save you the details of this mesmerizing journey for now but if readers provoke enough, its worth a separate post.

But by the time we landed, everyone of us thought all they deserved was good sleep, and probably a warm bed.

By the time of arrival, some of our guys were up and about looking in all possible spots for an early hot cup of tea and a Rolex, the famous snack in Uganda you have probably heard about.

Fast forward to Saturday morning, we were received by  #TeamKabale who treated us to the best delicacies that we had to share with children. The day was largely decorated by a sharing session with the children. The time we spent with these children was simply magical.

In his introduction remarks, Mwebembezi Johnson, the Senior  Councillor of the referral hospital gave us a brief background of the children in this hospital and appreciated the initiative by Rotaract club of Kabale for choosing to work with the hospital.

“This i really a great initiative. We are very grateful that, of all needy groups of people in Kabale, this Rotaract club chose the children in this hospital.  Thank you for thinking about us in this special way. Many of the children in this hospital are victims of abuse inflicted on them by old men. As a parent, I would like to appreciate the Rotaract clubs for such an initiative and thought of  the children in this hospital i such a special way. ” – Mr. Mwebembezi Johnson, the senior Counsellor, at the Kabale Referral Hospital. 

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Mr. Mwebembezi Johnson addressing Rotaractors and parents at the Kabale Referral Hospital

In his remarks, Johnson also called upon parents to hold each other responsible for their role in preventing the widespread of HIV among children in Kabale. He also urged parents to support all their children’s education equally to avoid their being idle.

Our massive appreciation goes to the awesome people from the Rotaract clubs of SFB-Kigali, Karura (Nairobi) Lake Victoria (Uganda) for the support. Yours was a contribution that we would never take for granted. Our revenge will be in order.

And to the members of the Rotaract Club of Kigali City, you are the best bunch of people around town!

For a preview of how things unfolded.

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The Rotaract SFB-Kigali squad on arrival at the Kabale Regional Hospital to support their own
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The team being introduced to the community at Kabale hospital
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Rotaractors at service
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Sharing time and a little love with the little ones makes a big difference

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After the project, Rotaractors couldn’t avoid swinging by the famous Lake Bunyonyi resort beach for adventure, sight seeing and fun. But again, we were told what happens at this spot simply ends there. Kindly save your curiosity for the details of what transpired.

For more pictures of the event, click here