Enhancing Girls’ Access to Education
During a three-day visit to Rwanda, the UK’s Minister for Development and Africa, Andrew Mitchell, is set to unveil two transformative education initiatives. Anchored by the Girls in Rwanda Learn (GIRL) program, these efforts seek to bolster girls’ education and promote inclusion.
The GIRL program, backed by a seven-year partnership with UNICEF, aims to support at-risk girls in remaining in school and to provide assistance to children with disabilities.
Empowering Through Education
Minister Mitchell’s determined effort to expand access to educational resources positions him to introduce Rwanda to the globally acclaimed Digital Library by the British Council. This deliberate move further emphasizes the UK’s steadfast dedication to democratizing education.
Over the course of 12 months, individuals residing in Rwanda will receive free access to an extensive collection of over 80,000 educational resources. This initiative has the potential to significantly enhance learning opportunities across the nation.
Strengthening Partnerships for Progress
As part of his visit, Minister Mitchell will assess the impact of British Investment Partnerships in Rwanda. A pivotal component of this visit involves observing the operations of a water treatment plant, a joint endeavor between British International Investment (BII) and Metito.
Focused on fostering growth in sectors vital to Rwanda’s development, such as water infrastructure, renewable energy, health, and telecommunications, this collaboration has generated numerous local job opportunities.
Fostering a Shared Vision
Minister Mitchell remarked,
“During my visit to Rwanda, I will delve into the depths of our partnership. Our collaborative efforts encompass crucial issues like climate change and education for women and girls.”
Emphasizing the long-term ties between the UK and Rwanda, he highlighted their shared commitment to poverty eradication, quality education, and enhanced public service delivery.
Nurturing Resilience and Knowledge
As part of his itinerary, Minister Mitchell will engage with beneficiaries of the UK’s development programs in Rwanda. He will witness firsthand how UK funding is bolstering families’ resilience and enabling them to rise sustainably from poverty.
Meanwhile, primary school students across Rwanda are reaping the benefits of English and math training delivered by UK experts, enhancing the quality of education.
Diplomatic Exchange and Conservation Advocacy
Minister Mitchell will also partake in high-level discussions with President of Rwanda Paul Kagame and Minister of Foreign Affairs Vincent Biruta. The talks will center on strengthening bilateral relations and addressing regional concerns.
Beyond diplomacy, he will attend Rwanda’s annual gorilla naming ceremony, Kwita Izina, underscoring the nation’s commitment to wildlife conservation.
A Forward-Looking Partnership
Looking ahead, the UK’s commitment to Rwanda remains steadfast. Plans to further solidify this partnership are in motion, with an eye on the UK-African Investment Summit scheduled for April 2024 in London.
The Path to Empowerment
The Girls in Rwanda Learn (GIRL) program, a £60 million FCDO-funded initiative set to operate from 2023 to 2030, holds the promise of transforming lives. Operating in 50% of Rwanda’s lowest-performing schools, GIRL aims to improve learning outcomes for 700,000 children, emphasizing the empowerment of marginalized girls through education.
Strengthening Bonds Through Collaboration
A £12.3 million partnership with UNICEF, extending over seven years, stands as a testament to the UK’s dedication to enhancing education opportunities in Rwanda. This partnership echoes the unwavering commitment to forging lasting progress through collaboration.