Rwanda – A Global Leader in Healing Division, Fostering Humanity, & Promoting HealthOct 03, 2022
Rwanda – A Global Leader in Healing Division, Humanity, & Health
In follow up to my last blog post, I thought I would share some of the specific inspirations I have pulled from my travels to Rwanda. In case you haven’t read the post I am referring to, here it is:
As a therapist who specializes in complex trauma and dissociative disorders, I can’t help but be completely inspired by the recovery and post-traumatic growth of Rwanda.
The genocide of 1994 was a collective trauma. The international community did not respond quickly enough and were unwilling to call it what it was. People were murdered by those they loved and trusted.
How did Rwanda not only recover from what happened in under 27 years, but also arrive as a global leader? The efforts resulted in the unification of their population, equalization of access to health care, carrying one of the lowest crime rates in the world, and elevating otherwise marginalized groups to positions of power.
Thoughtful, planful leadership by their current President, Paul Kagami and his supporters recognized the path to humane recovery. Here is more on Paul Kagami in the event you are curious: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paul_Kagame
Part of that plan included a very overt denouncement of racism, poverty, illiteracy and dictatorships.
The overarching plan was to unify the country by leveling the playing field, economic empowerment, eradicating division rooted in ethnic identity, and fighting against gender-based violence.
As an aside, 64% of the Rwandan parliament is run by women.
If you ask a Rwandan citizen about their ethnic origins (which I do not recommend because it is considered offensive), the answer would typically be “we are One Rwanda.” I naturally do not want to paint with a broad brush and assume every Rwandan feels the same way, because of course that is not possible. However, leadership is making a strong, consistent effort in steering the country in this direction.
The contrast with the U.S. is so stark with the trench that exists between groups being so vast. Sometimes it feels like there is so much space between people that people do not see each other as people. It’s pretty darned painful.
I recognize that I am likely viewing Rwanda through rose-colored glasses and as an outsider, there is so much that I don’t know.
And I do believe there are ingredients for genocidal violence as well as for unification. Rwanda knows both.
The main message I want to convey is that there is a place on this planet that has both experienced the most extreme result of division and bounced back to become a global beacon for humanity, health, and recovery.
I have traveled to Rwanda countless times over the past six years and learn something new every time I go. I am also inspired Every. Single. Time.
Orenda’s next retreat-style Trauma Coach Certification course will be held in Rwanda. Here we will have an opportunity to learn alongside local aspiring coaches, to witness the absolute beauty of the Rwandan hills, and to capture a piece of what we can all learn about how to work towards a more connective world.
In partnership with the Global Engagement Institute (https://www.global-engagement.org/my-gei/application-trauma-coaching) and mHub Rwanda (https://www.mhub-rwanda.org/), Orenda looks forward to hosting our next delegation in February of 2023.
For more information, you can view our courses page at https://www.theorendaproject.org/education. Scroll to the bottom of the page to find more information on our upcoming course!
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