Notes to broadcasters on women in Rwanda

    | July 4, 2011

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    Since the 1994 genocide in Rwanda, women have taken a lead role in the country’s recovery. In their roles as farmers, fishers, or Members of Parliament, women are central to the country’s healing and future development. Here are some recent news items on this topic:

    ‘Women Key to Country’s Development – First Lady’:

    CNN segment on Rwandan women:

    You may find the website of the Rwanda Women’s Network useful:

    For tools and guidelines on gender reporting from Inter Press Service:

    Farm Radio International has produced many scripts over the years on gender. Browse our archive here:

    Last week we ran an article from Rwanda, telling the story of Bernadette Mukamazimpaka, a genocide survivor, and how she is rebuilding her life in a tea-growing co-operative:

    Other stories from Rwanda published by Farm Radio Weekly include:

    Rwanda: Women seek shared control of family assets (FRW 51, January 2009).

    Rwanda: Land registry aims to reduce conflict (FRW 101, March 2010).

    This story may encourage you to produce a program about the changing roles of women in agriculture and economic life.  Look for women or women’s groups in your region who are challenging gender stereotypes, or doing something innovative, alongside their traditional roles in the fields and in the home. Examples might include: women who are taking on roles that men usually perform (such as fishing, or repairing motor vehicles); and women who have learned new skills, or taken loans to start a business. You could ask the women involved, and their families, some of these questions:

    -What made you decide to take up this new initiative (role, skill, etc.)?

    -How has this affected your family?

    -What reactions have you (or your family) seen from others concerning your activities?

    -How did the male members of the family react? Did they react in a different way than the females?

    -How do these reactions make you feel?

    -What are your plans for the future?