KIGALI, Rwanda, Oct. 28, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- Despite Africa being home to almost all philanthropic organizations and dependent on them for over a century, Rwanda's First Lady Mrs. Jeannette Kagame says philanthropy (ubuntu) is not new to the continent.
In Rwanda's case, she said, caring for neighbors (ubumuntu), is embedded within the country's culture.
"Our philanthropy is 'Ubuntu,' the ability to recognize our shared humanity and treat others in a way that enhances mutual dignity," the First Lady said Tuesday October 27 at a two-day Global Philanthropy Forum held in Rwanda's capital Kigali.
"There are no strict dictates for philanthropy in Africa. For us it is simply, 'Ubuntu,' or 'human-ness'."
Rwanda was the ideal location for the forum because of the country's tragic past. In 1994, the country witnessed the sinister side of humanity when over one million Tutsi were slaughtered.
Mrs. Kagame told delegates that despite the agony and sense of deep loss everyone carried in their hearts, countless people found within themselves the strength to put aside their pain and attend to others with more pain.
"Our nation today is the result of the resilience of human nature and the philanthropic heart," she said.
Jane Wales, the President and CEO of Global Philanthropy Forum and World Affairs said, "Philanthropy is about private capitals used to deliver public sector service."
Speaking at the event, Her Royal Highness the Queen of Buganda Kingdom in Uganda Sylvia Nagginda said that the private sector and civil society must work together to serve societies. "We must leverage culture and tradition," she added.
Rwanda's First Lady pointed out that culture and tradition inspired the creation of her charity organization, Imbuto Foundation.
The foundation has since 2001 catered for the most vulnerable in the community, through Protection and Care of Families against HIV/AIDS and revived their reason to enjoy life.
The foundation also supports development of a healthy, educated and prosperous society. Mrs. Kagame launched Isange One Stop Center in 2009 to complement national efforts in responding to Gender Based Violence (GBV).
The center has received more than 6,000 GBV cases. Thousands of girls and boys in Rwanda have also been proud beneficiaries of Imbuto Foundation. The First Lady is also spearheading a nationwide program providing free fully furnished homes to elderly genocide widows.
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SOURCE KT Press