Claudin Mukakalisa (26), and her son Jeandediue Ufiteyezu (11)
(source: Jonathan Torgovnik for Intended Consequences)
Today marks the 20th anniversary of one of the most horrific events in modern history. Between April and June of 1994, an estimated 800,000 Tutsis were killed in the span of 100 days in the small central African country of Rwanda. The ramifications of this genocide continue to this day. In Intended Consequences, Jonathan Torgovnik, MediaStorm and our partners at Foundation Rwanda examined particularly tragic stories left behind by the Hutu militia - the lives of the women they held captive, raped – and left pregnant.
20 years later, Rwanda is able to tell a story that once seemed unlikely, one of optimism and resurgence. Jules Shell, Executive Director & Co-founder of Foundation Rwanda, offers a glimpse into the challenges and triumphs survivors of the genocide face today.
What signs of recovery have you seen in Rwanda over the past two decades?
Jules Shell: Rwanda has made great strides since the genocide, in the rebuilding of the country. There has been a lot of development and investment, in particular in building the capacity of the government to deliver essential services such as primary education and healthcare. However, there are still great challenges for the country which is still one of the least developed in the world (ranked 167 out of 187 countries in the Human Development Index 2012). Vulnerable and marginalized populations within the country, such as women genocide survivors, and their children born of rape, still have particular challenges resulting from the genocide – which is why Foundation Rwanda is specifically focused on delivering support specifically to them.