The RDDC has worked in Rwanda since 2008. It administers a permanent Dance & IT Program for Street Children in Kigali. All programs and projects are implemented in conjunction with local partner organization FidesCo Rwanda.
Dance & IT For Street Children
RDDC formalized this flagship program with local partner FidesCo Rwanda in 2011. The four permanent Rwandan staff members of RDDC work with approximately 40-50 street children five days a week in order to assist with the overall rehabilitation and reintegration program led by FidesCo Rwanda.
The RDDC local staff lead dance classes from 2:00pm to 4:30pm on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. On Tuesdays and Thursdays, the staff lead IT and computer science classes, introducing the street children to the basics of computers and laptops. The goal of the dance program is to develop the children’s basic cognitive skills in a structured learning environment. Thereafter, the children start to develop a crucial life skill through the computer classes. This equips them with a vocational skill that can be leveraged to advance their lives and assist in the transition from the street to a formal education or a job.
The top performing students in the dance and IT programs are selected and sponsored to attend Sonrise Boarding School in Musanze, Rwanda.
Rwanda Youth: Children’s Stories From the Streets and Their Dreams for The Future
The students in the Dance & IT Program are featured on RDDC’s website: www.rwandayouth.com Here, RDDC is looking for sponsors to underwrite the costs of boarding school for these street children, giving them a path to re-enter the formal educational system and a safe living environment while staying in their home country. This is the best way to ensure that the children will not return to the streets and that they will have access to a basic human right: the right to education.
The website tells the life stories of these children – how they have experienced the repercussions of the 1994 Tutsi genocide and how they have overcome many obstacles with the help of individuals, governmental and nongovernmental agencies. An added benefit of the site is the way it enables these children and youth to communicate with people from around the world while also giving them a practical way to implement the IT skills they are learning in the RDDC program.
The IT students manage their own public blog: www.blog.rwandayouth.com.