Wednesday, 10 August 2016

Local Disaster Response teams of 15 sectors refreshed on disaster management and first aid

participants undergo emergency response training to support  local communities affected by disasters

In efforts to reduce disaster risks and ensure timely response when calamity hits, Rwanda Red Cross has set up disaster response teams from the National, district to sector levels which are charged with day today management of disaster risks and response whenever need arises.
These teams are supported by regular training to ensure they are well positioned to deliver as expected and in this regard, Local Disaster Response Teams (LDRTs) of 15 sectors in the districts of Gakenke Ngororero, Nyabihu, Karongi and Rutsiro received refresher training in disaster management and first aid skills.
In total, 300 volunteers who constitute the 15 disaster response teams participated in this training.
Contents of the training included largely disaster management skills with a greater focus on disaster risk reduction (DRR) which is implemented through Rwanda Red Cross’ Model Village approach that aims at empowering community resilience to economic and disaster shocks.
Skills imparted in DRR include mapping of local disaster risks, mobilizing community efforts to mitigate disaster risks, educating communities on how to reduce disaster risks and these constitute the responsibilities of the disaster response teams.
Rwanda Red Cross as a component of the Red Cross Movement has in the recent past strengthened its efforts in disaster risk reduction especially through efforts to build community resilience through socioeconomic empowerment of the most vulnerable people and other environmental protection efforts.
According to various studies by UN and IFRC on investing in disaster risk reduction, it is now believed that one dollar investment in disaster risk reduction saves between two to ten dollars that would otherwise be spent in response.

Besides skills in disaster management, participants received refresher on first aid skills which are essential in disaster response activities particularly in road accidents, household incidents like fire outbreaks and burns, and other injuries that may result from various factors.

Monday, 8 August 2016

Rwanda Red Cross’ application hoped to demystify first aid to ordinary Rwandans

The first aid application has information on basic life-saving gestures including safety tips in various environments. Get it from your google play and learn first aid

Many fatalities resulting from accidents and other emergency situations result from lack of immediate medical treatment and as a result, first aid does not just facilitate recovery, it helps save lives.
According to a 2009 advocacy report of the Health and Care Department of the International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies called “First aid for a safe future”, a human heart ceases beating within four minutes after breathing stops, permanent brain damage can occur within four to six minutes after breathing stops, over 50 pct of deaths from road accidents occur in the first few minutes of a crash.”
Considering these realities, the presence of a skilled first aider at a scene of accident can potentially save lives that may be lost as result of airway obstructions.
Towards this end of increasing the number of Rwandans trained in first aid, the Rwanda Red Cross has teams of trained volunteers who conduct community assimilations to impart some of the skills to the general population.

However, given the growing access to internet and the increasing penetration on mobile telephony in Rwanda, the Rwanda Red Cross has developed an android first aid application through people can learn basic first aid skills.

The app in google play appears on the name "ubutabazi na Croix Rouge" download it today and learn life-saving gestures you can use in the time of need
The application is now available in Google store and can be downloaded on every handset with an android operating system.

• Easy to use English French and Kinyarwanda languages toggle to switch translation directly   inside the app.
• Simple step-by-step instructions guide you through everyday first aid scenarios. 
• Fully integrated with 9-1-2 so you can call EMS from the app at any time.
• Videos and animations make learning first aid fun and easy.
• Safety tips for everything help you prepare for emergencies.
• Preloaded content means you have instant access to all safety information at anytime, even without reception or an Internet connection.
• Interactive quizzes allow you to earn badges that you can share with your friends and show off your life saving knowledge

Saturday, 23 July 2016

Rwanda Red Cross conducts 6th General Assembly, votes for new governing board

Participants at the 6th General Assembly of the Rwanda Red Cross/ Photo by Antoine Numugabo
The Rwanda Red Cross Society conducted its 6th General Assembly since its founding in 1964 on the 23rd of July 2016 under the theme “strengthening community resilience and disaster risk reduction.”
Under the constitution that governs the Rwanda Red Cross, a General Assembly, which is the most highly ranked body in the governance of this Rwandan society, is convened every four years to give general guidance on the day to day management and the society.

During the 6th General Assembly, management and governance structures represented the achievements of the past five years correlating to a five year strategic plan that will be completed at the end of the year.

Among other achievements, the Rwanda Red Cross was glad to note that the society was able to respond to most of the disasters that were experienced in Rwanda, supporting affected families with immediate emergency support in addition to post emergency recovery support.

In the area of recovery, the Rwanda Red Cross Secretary General Mr. Apollinaire Karamaga noted that the National Society manage to respond to the needs of Rwandans evicted from Tanzania in 2013, resettling people hit by natural disasters and resettling others from high-risk zones through construction of good quality housing.

Close to 2,000 houses were constructed with some examples including the 180 houses constructed in Bikingi village of Nyabihu District in the Western Province which benefited Rwandans who repatriated from DR Congo and lacked descent homes in addition to vulnerable families that were living in high-risk zones.

But more notably, the Rwanda Red Cross in the past five years directed a lot of energy in community resilience undertakings under its “Model village” approach. This is an integrated way of holistically empowering a community to address its vulnerabilities.

“We have 18 villages in each district meaning a total of 540 with which we are working towards building their capacities to solve their vulnerabilities. Activities in these villages are largely centred on mindset change and supporting vulnerable people to gain access to the economy through supporting livelihood support initiatives,” Karamaga notes.

For instance livestock are distributed to vulnerable families in efforts to help them get an income and fight feed insecurity. In the last five years, more than 8,000 livestock were distribute and thanks to the rotation scheme policy which requires a beneficiary to give to the next person on the first birth, more than 31,000 vulnerable households benefited and indeed their lives have been transformed significantly.

But aside management at the General Secretariat, the Rwanda Red Cross is on the national level governed by a committee of governors which is elected by the General Assembly.
Similarly during the 6th General Assembly, a new governing committee was elected to carry on the works that another which has been at the helm of the institution since 2008 and headed by Dr. Bernard Nzigiye as its President.

Speaking slightly before the election of new committee members, Dr. Nzigiye noted that some of the key policies that the committee he led placed greater emphasis included decentralization of Rwanda Red Cross structures, resource capacity development to facilitate the National Society to grow towards self-reliance (kwigira) and in recruiting capable leaders at decentralized levels and strong staff at the National Secretariat.

“The things I am glad for include the fact that today; Rwanda Red Cross not only depends on the support of others to finance its daily activities but also has managed to grow to an extent where it can meet some of its costs. This is the direction we strongly encouraged and we hope and no doubt it will continue towards self-reliance. It is only then that we will be able to sustainably support suffering Rwandans every time they need us for we will not be waiting upon foreign support alone.”

According to the constitution of the Rwanda Red Cross, a committee cannot be in office beyond two four-year terms and as such, the Rwanda Red Cross 6th General Assembly voted for new members who will be joined by representatives of the Ministries of Health and Local Government, a Treasurer General they will appoint, and the Secretary General of the Rwanda Red Cross to form the National Society’s 6th Governing Committee.

New Governing Committee of the Rwanda Red Cross Society

President _________________________________________________ Dr. Bwito Paul
Vice President ____________________________________________   Ms. Mukandekezi  Froincoise
Secretary__________________________________________________Mr. Apollinaire Karamaga
Member of National Governing Committee (Kigali City) ___________ Ms. Uwamahoro M. Jose
Member of National Governing Committee (Western Province) ______Mr. Mazimpaka S. Emmanuel
Member of National Governing Committee (Northern Province) _____ Mr. Simango  Maxime
Member of National Governing Committee (Eastern Province) _______Ms. J. D’Arc Muhawenimana
Member of National Governing Committee (Southern Province) ______Mr. Sebaganwa Guillaume

Also, the board will have the representation of the Rwanda Red Cross youth wing President and Vice President who were elected last year by the youth General Assembly.

Youth President ________________________________________________ Ms. Rubuga Allexia
Youth Vice President ____________________________________________ Mr. Majyambere Silas

About Rwanda Red Cross Society
The Rwanda Red Cross Society was established in the country since 1964 to support the Rwandan Government in humanitarian action.
As a support organ to Rwandan authorities in humanitarian action, RRCS is present in every district and sector of Rwanda through local committees at each of these administrative levels which are charged with the day to day activities of the society and its ever growing network of volunteers and members.
Over the last 50 years and more profoundly in the past 20 years, RRCS has scaled up its activities to go beyond response during natural disasters and emergencies to tackle the gist of the problem; impoverishment.
Through several projects with the support of various partners including among others the Rwandan Government, Rwanda Red Cross has catalyzed development for many formerly dissolute Rwandans and has been supported efforts to reduce disaster risk.
In implementing all these various activities, the target has and will always be; building resilient communities and alleviating human suffering in Rwanda.
The Rwanda Red Cross is managed by a General Secretariat  headed by the Secretary General while the governing authority which offers long term orientation is the National Governing Committee headed by a President elected by a once in four years General Assembly.
At the decentralized levels, a district committee is elected at each district headed by a President and Vice President. This similar structure is replicated in sectors and cells where committees have been established.
Currently, there are more than 100,000 members who contribute annual membership fees to the Rwanda Red Cross while thousands of volunteers are mobilized now and then across the country to support the implementation of several interventions to support alleviate the plight of those in most need.
Currently, the annual membership contribution is a minimum of Frw2,000 and 500 for adults and youth respectively and anyone can go to their respective district branch to make their contribution to support efforts to help the most vulnerable.

Sunday, 10 July 2016

Croix-Rouge y’u Rwanda irakangurira abatwara ibinyabiziga kwiga ubutabazi bw’ibanze

Ibikorwa byo kwerekana ubutabazi bw'ibanze byakozwe mu bice bitanu by'umugi wa Kigali mu rwego rwo gukangurira abatwara ibinyabiziga n'abakoresha umuhanda ku kamaro k'ubutazi bw'ibanze
Kuri uyu wa 30/06/2016 muri Croix- Rouge y’u Rwanda hatanzwe impamyabumenyi ku bashoferi baturuka muri sosiyete zitwara abagenzi n’abayobozi ba za auto Ecoles (amashuri yigisha amategeko y’umuhanda no gutwara ibinyabiziga) bagera kuri 30.

Muri uwo muhango, Perezida wa Croix- Rouge y’u Rwanda Dr Bernard Nzigiye mu ijambo rye yasobanuye ko bibabaje kuba umubare munini w’abazira impanuka baba bashoboraga gutabarwa iyo baba barahuye n’uzi ubutabazi bw’ibanze impanuka ikimara kuba. Yagaragaje ko kuba harateguwe amahugurwa nk’aya kwari ukugirango iki kibazo gikemurwe. Yasabye abahuguwe kuba itara rimurikira abandi, bityo ibyo bigishijwe nabo bakazabigeza ku bandi.

Dr Nzigiye yavuze kandi ko ahantu hatanu mu mujyi wa Kigali habereye igikorwa cyo kwerekana uko ubutabazi bw’ibanze bukorwa hanasobanurwa akamaro kabwo aho hakaba ari  Nyabugogo, Remera, Kabuga, Nyamirambo na Nyacyonga.

 Nkiko Samson umukozi wa Croix- Rouge y’u Rwanda ushinzwe gahunda y’ubutabazi bw’ibanze yavuze ko icyifuzo cya Croix- Rouge y’u Rwanda ari uko ubutabazi bw’ibanze bwagera kuri buri munyarwanda. Asobanura ibyakozwe yavuze ko icyari kigamijwe ari ukwerekana ko umutekano mu muhanda ureba buri wese.
Abayobozi b'ibigo byigisha gutwara ibinyabiziga n'abashoferi b'amamodoka atwara abagenzi mu ntara basoza amahugurwa mu butabazi bw'ibanze
Abitabiriye ayo mahugurwa bishimiye ubumenyi bayavomyemo bikaba bigaragarira mu buhamya bwabo: Umurerwa Aisha umuyobozi wungirije muri Auto Ecole Nyamirambo avuga ko kuba ashoboye guhugurwa ari amahirwe kuko abona bizamugirira akamaro cyane. Asobanura ko aya mahugurwa azamugirira akamaro mu kazi akora kandi bikanazabafasha mu buzima bwabo bwa buri munsi no mu ngo zabo.  
Mu buhamya bwe aragira ati “ubutabazi bw’ibanze nigiye aha ni ngombwa ko bwigishwa muri auto Ecoles zose, kandi na none buzamfasha no mu muryango wanjye: umwana agize ikibazo namujyana kwa muganga hari ibyo nabanje kumukorera”.

Rutayisire Jean D’Amour, umushoferi muri RFTC avuga ko we yatangiye gushyira mu bikorwa ibyo yigishijwe. Mu buhamya bwe avuga ko mu gihe kitarenze icyumweru nyuma y’uko yize ubutabazi bw’ibanze amaze gutabara inshuro ebyiri.

Muri iki cyiciro hahuguwe abantu 30 bikaba bizanakomeza. Kubera akamaro k’aya mahugurwa ba nyiri amasosiyete atwara abagenzi bemeye ko bazajya batera inkunga amahugurwa nk’aya.
Kwerekana uko ubutabazi bw'ibanze bukorwa

Wednesday, 29 June 2016

Croix Rouge y’u Rwanda yateye inkunga ya Toni 10 z’imyenda abana bo mu nkambi ya Mahama

Ubuzima bw’abana bo mu nkambi bwugarijwe n’ibibazo bitandukanye bibangamira uburenganzira bwabo bw’ibanze. Muribyo harimo no kutagira icyo kwambara.

Croix Rouge y’u Rwanda (CRR) imaze kubona ikibazo cyugarije abana bo mu nkambi y’impunzi z’Abarundi iri i Mahama mu Karere ka Kirehe yagejeje inkunga ya Toni icyenda (9) zigizwe n’amabaro 918 y’imyenda maze iyishyikiriza abana batishoboye bari mu nkambi.

Iyi nkunga yashyikirijwe ubuyobozi bwi nkambi y’impunzi z’Abarundi i Mahama tariki 21 zukwezi kwa gatandatu k’uyu mwaka wa 2016 hatangwa imyenda kuri bamwe ku bana bayigenewe ariko igikorwa cyo kuyitanga kugirango igere kubagenerwabikorwa bandi bose kikaba gitangijwe kuzakomeza.

Abana bagenewe iyi nkunga hakaba harimo abari mu mashuri abanza ndetse n’abatarageza ku myaka yo kwiga.

Nzoyisaba Jeannette ni umwe mu babyeyi bashyikirijwe imyambaro nibura igera kuri 5 y’umwana we w’imyaka 2. Yagaragaje ibyishimo bye agira ati: “dukenera byinshi hano mu nkambi, ubuzima buba bugoranye cyane ariko byumwihariko abana bacu ntibagiraga icyo kwambara none turakibonye, turashimira uyu muryango wa Croix Rouge uyiduhaye”.

Umukozi wa MIDIMAR wari witabiriye uwo muhango Madamu Gatama Grace akaba ashinzwe gukurikirana ibikorwa byo mu nkambi yatangaje ko yishimiye inkunga CRR ikomeje gutanga mu nkambi. Yavuze ko imyenda y’abana ikaba yari kimwe mu bibazo bihangayikishije ababyeyi muri iyi nkambi.

Imyenda Croix Rouge y’u Rwanda yatanze yaturutse mu gihugu cya Denmark, ikusanyijwe n’abana bafite umutima wo gutabara bagenzi babo bari mu nkambi z’impunzi kubera intambara.

Croix Rouge y’u Rwanda ifite ibikorwa bitandukanye mu nkambi byo gufasha impunzi harimo ubutabazi bwa buri munsi bwo kugeza abarwayi kwa muganga, ibikorwa byo guhuza imiryango yaburanye n’abayo, imfashanyo y’ibikoresho byo mu nzu no mu gikoni, gutera imiryango iba mu nkambi inkunga yo guhinga akarima k’igikoni kugirango baronke imboga zokwongera imirire myiza, n’ibindi.
Intumwa ya Croix Rouge ya Denmark mu Rwanda Marie-Chantal Dahl yambika umwe ku bana bahawe imyenda ingofero. Umwana umwe yahawe imyenda igera nibura kuri 5

Numugabo Antoine

Tuesday, 10 May 2016

Rwanda Red Cross distributes relief items to 499 households in Gakenke

Over 211 houses have completely been demolished by
floods and mudslidesin just one sector of Gakenke district
Following a series of heavy rains that led to the loss of over 54 lives and destroyed more than 269 houses in Gakenke district, has this Tuesday in partnership with the Ministry of Disaster Management and Refugee Affairs distributed Nonfood items (NFIs) to 499 households hit by the disaster in Gakenke district.

The support offered to each of the households whose lives were harshly impacted by floods and mudslides included a tent for temporary shelter, two jerry cans, two blankets, two sleeping mats, a kitchen set, and soap, kitenge for women and clothes for children to help them in the short term.

69 year old Niyonsanga Emmanuel a widower with five children is among the beneficiaries of this distribution of NFIs which came in to support the most vulnerable people who have been left with nothing as a result of the floods and mudslides that hit Gakenke district.

Niyonsanga Emmanuel after receiving NFI support from Rwanda Red Cross

“My whole house was washed away by the mudslides down the hill. Now without a place to call home, we will erect this tent that I have been given and sleep there while more solutions for the long term are sought. I am really grateful to the government and the Red Cross for being close to us from the very beginning of this disaster, I am really happy for the support given.”

Rwanda Red Cross volunteers have also been instrumental in rescue operations since the beginning of the catastrophe in the morning of 8th May 2016 from around 2:00 am in the morning.

Among other activities, volunteers supported the rescue of people who were stuck in house debris, trained swimmers in the local disaster response teams of the district helped rescue especially children and women who were drowning in the flood waters in addition to offering psychosocial support to families that lost loved ones to the disaster during burial ceremonies on Monday May 9th.

Gakenke sector which has so far recorded 211 houses that have completely been destroyed in addition to over 221 which were partially demolished and on the verge of total destruction was the most affected by these disasters in the district and victims from this sector have been lead targets for the Rwanda Red Cross support aimed at helping the most vulnerable.

The Executive Secretary of the sector Bisengimana Janvier noted that the NFI support given has been greatly needed by his residents.

“These (NFIs) are immediate needs which will help victims of these disasters to cope with what they are going through. We thank the Red Cross, government and all other partners for the immediate support, I recall that throughout the night of Saturday when the disaster begun, we were with Red Cross volunteers helping in the rescue operation.”

In a rapid assessment that the Rwanda Red Cross team on field is conducting, it has been noticed that there is great need for food since several food stores and plantations were washed away by mudslides, need for shelter in the short term and relocation of families from high risk zones in the medium term.

Also, 80 households that were greatly affected by similar disaster in Muhanga District in Rwanda’s Southern Province have also today  been given similar support by the Rwanda Red Cross in partnership with MIDMAR to help those most affected to cope with the challenges that have arose from the floods and mudslides that his the area.
499 households most affected have received support of nonfood items to help them cope with the challenges faced

Monday, 9 May 2016

Heavy rains devastate northern, southern and western parts of Rwanda

A car stuck in the mudslide is being
pulled out by volunteers and locals
At least 54 people have been killed by heavy rains that flooded Northern, Southern, and Western Province districts of Gakenye, Muhanga, and Rubavu and Ngororero respectively.

Many more are nursing injuries in various hospitals and health centres in the hit districts.
The heavy rains recorded over the weekend decimated over 419 houses in Gakenye and 80 in Muhanga leaving thousands homeless. This is in addition to the devastation to people’s crops where over 3850 ha of bean fields and about 600 ha of rice and sugarcane plantations on the banks of River Nyabarongo have reportedly been washed away by floods and landslides.

This region was hit by heavy rains that resulted into flooding and mudslides leading to heavy losses of lives, destruction of homes and decimation of farming fields.

Among others, this has exacerbated fear for tough times ahead for most of the devastated families.

In Gakenye where the downpour had the most devastating impact, rain is reported to have started in the midnight of Saturday and devastated six sectors of the district, mostly Gakenke sector where 16 died that night and Nemba where 9 lives were immediately lost.
Most people were killed by houses that collapsed while others were killed by floodwaters.
Currently, Rwanda Red Cross volunteers in the area have joined government and other local organisations in offering first aid to the wounded and trying to rescue those who are still stuck in the rubble of what were formerly homes.
The heavy downpour that devastated these regions for over 30 hours also interrupted traffic flow from the city of Kigali which has challenged transportation of relief items to the areas. However, the Rwanda Red Cross teams will be providing relief support including 998 sleeping mats, 998 blankets, 499 kitchen sets, 2495 pieces of soap, 998 jerry cans, 499 tents and clothes for children and women who are the most vulnerable in the situation.
According to weather forecasts, more rains are expected in this region the whole of today and the Rwanda Red Cross will surely require more support and involvement of all parties so as to be there for everyone everywhere and on time.
thousands of people who cross River Nyabarongo to and from Kigali City each day are unable to carry obn their daily activities now that the river has flooded the road

By Matthew Rwahigi

Correction: earlier version mentioned 91 instead of 54 people reported dead