Ruanda: Daphrose Mukarutamu

Her vision is a Rwanda without boundaries, a united people living in peace. Co-opting neighbors into a cultural group, of young adults, will serve as a catalyst for promoting reconciliation.

— Daphrose Mukarutamu

Daphrose Mukarutamu, a 57-year-old widow from Rwanda, is the founder of Duhozanye, an association whose objective is to restore hope to widows and orphans. The association closely follows up and defends the rights of rural communities. It promotes economic development, provides shelter to members and helps them grapple loneliness and trauma. Daphrose is also the director of an interethnic cultural group that sensitizes people on peaceful coexistence. She intervenes in conflict resolution at administrative and community level.

Daphrose Mukarutamu is a member of several rural associations and has been elected to local committees. She helps to resolve confilcts at administrative and community level. Duhozanye, located in Save, Rwanda, aims to rehabilitate widows and orphans by closely monitoring their rights and living conditions. Duhozanye means "console each other". The association also defends the rights of rural communities, provides counseling, gives opportunities for dialogue and promotes economic development through income-generating activities. The focus of Daphrose's work is rural development and the empowerment of women victims of genocide. This is achieved through peace building, support for quick-impact projects and community sensitization on peaceful coexistence through mutual work. A cultural group conveys messages on truth and forgiveness. Daphrose’s charisma and her motherly support touch everyone she interacts with. She draws her strength from helping women realize a better world without any discrimination and by encouraging cohesion among members of the association. Daphrose listens to members, encourages dialogue, openness and participation. She leads by example and is transparent in managing collective property. Despite having no prior training in accounting or management, she successfully secured funding for the construction of houses and training workshops for orphans. A victim who was trained by the association and worked as its coordinator was elected mayor and later elected to the National Assembly. With the support of the Programme Régional d'Echanges et de Formation pour le Développement, Duhozanye's future strategies include expanding its membership to include those who advocate against genocide and are involved in sustainable development.

Duhozanye Nzambazamariya Veneranda