There are 15 vocational training centres in Rwanda which are broadly working well. The key skill being taught in the centres is tailoring but they are now also developing a knitting programme. The class sizes are normally 16 to 20 in number with the smallest being 10 and the largest 25. They are examining the possibilities of introducing skills more suitable for men.
The centres are situated in rural areas and in refugee camps where the opportunity to learn practical skills are very limited. Apart from the possibility of earning money from skills learned, the self-worth generated by being equipped with a skill is a significant dimension of the goal of the centres. The hope is that in the future, the work of the centres will further expand to embrace teaching business skills like budgeting and accounting.
A co-ordinator for all the centres is being sought to help maximise the potential that this initiative presents.
The lady who leads this project is heavily engaged in work with widows and orphans who are victims of the genocide and has been influential in the establishment of a variety of small economic and training projects throughout Rwanda.