The Women of Rwanda

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Ten years after the Rwandan genocide, it is the woman who hold the future of the country in their hands. After the massacre that claimed 800,000 lives, there were many more women than men, left in the country. Aside from their own memories of murder and of rape, they collectively faced a future of poverty, disease and displacement. They were also the ones who had to take an awesome responsibility of rebuilding the nation. And they are.

Today in Rwanda, women are participating in politics, running the NGO’s and leading grassroots organizations. Theirs is a story of determination and courage. In the second of our two part series, two women from Rwanda, talk about their experience in the days of the genocide, and their decision to look ahead, rather than dwelling only on the past.


Chantal Kiyatesi, survivor of the Rwandan Genocide, co-founder of AVEGA, the Association of the Widows of Genocide, based in Kigali, Rwanda

Rangira Bea Gallimore, Professor of Romance Language and Literatures at the University of Missouri at Columbia.