Rwanda aims to strengthen capacities of 100 young professionals in the cultural and creative industries through targeted training workshops

A Korean Funds-in-Trust to UNESCO project is supporting a series of “training of trainers” workshops in Kigali in the fields of Performing Arts (music, theatre, dance), Film Production and Visual Arts as well as Creative Entrepreneurship, which were identified as priority areas for training following a mapping of capacity gaps carried out in 2018 by Ishyo Arts Centre.

The Korean Funds-in-Trust to UNESCO project “Creative Industries development for the diversity of cultural expressions – Strengthening the sustainability of creative industry in Lao PDR, Uzbekistan and Rwanda” aims to increase capacities of cultural and creative industry actors in order to strengthen this industry as a strategic development sector contributing to economic growth, job creation, revenue generation, and improving conditions of life. The activities in Rwanda are being carried out by UNESCO in close collaboration with the Ministry of Sports and Culture, the Rwandan Academy of Language and Culture, the Rwandan National Commission for UNESCO and Ishyo Arts Centre. An international expert from the UNESCO Expert Facility for the 2005 Convention on the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions, Dr Jenny Mbaye, was also engaged by UNESCO to advise the national partners on the implementation of the training programme.

The project was launched in January 2018 and started with a Survey and Report of Cultural Entrepreneurs, Professionals and other Artists in Rwanda Participating in the International Market. This was followed by a Stakeholder Mapping Report on Capacity gaps in the Cultural and Creative Industries (CCI) in Rwanda. Finally, a training plan and methodology were developed along with a communications strategy to raise awareness of the contribution of the cultural and creative industries to sustainable development in Rwanda.

Starting in May 2019, Ishyo Arts Centre, the national implementation partner for the project, is coordinating a series of “training of trainers” workshops that aim to prepare Rwandan professionals in three sectors of the cultural and creative industries, namely: performing arts (music, theatre, dance), film production and visual arts as well as creative entrepreneurship.

The training workshops will continue through August 2019. They are being led by various African experts in the following fields of competence: Music & Concerts led by ZHU Culture (Senegal); Theatre led by Théâtre des Bouffes du Nord (Paris, France); Film led by MAISHA Film Lab (Uganda); Visual Arts led by VANSA (South Africa); and Entrepreneurship led by GoDown Arts Centre (Kenya).

The project is overseen by a National Steering Committee composed of prominent members of the Culture sector in Rwanda and chaired by Dr. James Vuningoma, Director of the Rwandan Academy of Language and Culture.

“UNESCO is grateful for the support from the Government of the Republic of Korea, which has enabled us to lead this important capacity building programme for Rwanda,” said Ms. Ann Therese Ndong-Jatta, Director of the UNESCO Regional Office for Eastern Africa. “I am confident that the synergies and strengths reinforced through this project will significantly contribute to developing the creative economy in Rwanda,” she added.