International Alert launches project for peaceful rural transformation in Rwanda

Independent peacebuilding organisation International Alert has launched a three-year project in Rwanda titled Partnership for Peaceful Rural Transformation (PPRT).

Funded by the Office of Conflict Management and Mitigation (CMM) through the US Agency for International Development (USAID), the project will respond to challenges and opportunities presented by the Rwandan government’s ambitious land reform programme, which aims to bring about more effective and efficient land management in the country.

The project applies a ‘conflict-sensitivity’ lens to the initiatives proposed in the programme. This means addressing the information gap that exists between the government and communities on far-reaching implications of the programme, such as the implementation of the reforms, and the challenges they may pose.

The project aims to increase space for debate on land reform and rural development in Rwanda in order to ensure these ultimately lead to equitable growth and reduction of the risk of conflict.

Peter Malnak, Mission Director of USAID/Rwanda, said:

"USAID recognizes the achievements Rwanda has made through ambitious land reform policies. We also recognize that many challenges and opportunities still exist in the land sector due to changing land issues. We are excited about the way the Peaceful Rural Transformation activity will engage communities, local authorities, civil society and the private sector to increase their awareness of and engagement in land policies toward the goal of reducing land-related conflict.

Reducing conflict and improving social cohesion is a priority of both the GOR and the US Government and we are proud to support such an important initiative".

Commenting on the aim of the project, Gloriosa Bazigaga, Country Manager for Rwanda and Burundi at International Alert, said:

"Solving land related conflict is the right and peaceful way for sustainable development in Rwanda".

The launch event will take place today (14 November) in Huye District, in Rwanda’s Southern Province. It will be an opportunity for project staff to interact with Rwandan government officials and other key stakeholders and deepen the understanding of the land-related conflicts within specific areas targeted by the project, laying a strong foundation for partnerships.

The project, which started on 1 May 2013 and will run until 30 April 2016, will be implemented in four districts: Ngoma in the Eastern Province, Huye in the Southern Province, Ngororero and Rutsiro in the Western Province; while some project activities will be implemented at national level.

EDITOR’S NOTES

Contact

To find out more about the launch, please contact:

Betty Mutesi

Project Manager for Rwanda and Burundi at International Alert

T +250 280 300 141

M +250 788 307 784

bmutesi@international-alert.org

For media enquiries, please contact:

Ilaria Bianchi

Head of Communications at International Alert

T +44 (0) 207 627 6858

M +44 (0)7910 255 256

ibianchi@international-alert.org

About International Alert

International Alert is one of the world’s leading peace building organisations, with nearly 30 years of experience laying the foundations for peace. We work with local people in over 25 countries around the world to help them build peace. And we advise governments, organisations and companies on how to support peace.

In Rwanda, we support the peaceful reintegration and reconciliation of genocide survivors, perpetrators and ex-combatants. We also promote spaces for dialogue between citizens and authorities on land reform and rural development, to ensure this leads to equitable growth and a reduction in the risk of conflicts. We have been working in Rwanda since 1995.