For more than 8 years we have been working with vulnerable Jewish people in former Soviet countries to help them into employment. This unique project builds on the knowledge and expertise we've developed to benefit young people in Rwanda. The DFID grant is for £504,744 and covers 75% of the overall cost of the project with World Jewish Relief contributing the rest.
Together with Rwandan partners, UNM and SACCA, we will be helping young Rwandans from poor backgrounds and fractured families in a country which has suffered tremendous trauma as a result of the genocide. This shared history of genocide with the Jewish community prompted World Jewish Relief to start programmes in Rwanda 12 years ago.
The three year project will take place in mainly rural areas of Eastern Province Rwanda. It will focus on helping young people create successful farming businesses or guide them towards careers which are in particular demand in the local area, including construction, hospitality and beauty.
Alongside technical skills, specialist workshops and business support for entrepreneurs, participants will also be taught soft skills such as developing a positive mind-set, confidence building and problem-solving. They will also receive introduction to employers and taught how to develop business networks and access markets.
Farming in Rwanda has traditionally been viewed as low-income and low-skilled but World Jewish Relief has implemented previous projects in the country which have shown that Rwandan farmers can greatly increase their income by producing high value crops and having access to the right markets.
Ekaterina Mitiaev, Head of Impact and Livelihoods at World Jewish Relief says: “The programme will awaken more than 2500 vulnerable young people to the possibility of a future of prosperity and dignity. Not only they will substantially increase their incomes and lift themselves and their family members out of extreme poverty but they will also leverage the project’s impact through inspiring their peers, becoming role models and creating jobs for others.”
Stacey Swimer, Director of International Programmes and Partnerships at World Jewish Relief says: “We are delighted with the funding from the Government’s UK Aid Direct Fund which will enable us to make a significant lasting impact for the participants and their families through this unique and transformative programme. As a Jewish organisation it is imperative that we reach out to those who have a shared history of persecution and to help them in the best way we can. We have been doing this since the 1930s when Jewish refugees escaping Nazi-Europe sought found refuge in the UK and we continue to use our expertise to help people, who are impoverished and marginalised, to rebuild their lives and their communities.