In 1934, when Akagera savanna was turned into a national park, lions, rhinoceros together with other big animals, were roaming in the low altitude part of eastern Rwanda. The savanna landscape, whose name came from Akagera River considered the remotest source of Nile River, is 2,700 square kilometers long.
Umwiherero, best translated as “retreat”, refers to a tradition in Rwandan culture where leaders convene in a secluded place in order to reflect on issues affecting their communities. Upon return from these retreats, the objective is to have identified solutions. On a smaller scale, this term also refers to the action of moving to a quieter place to discuss issues with a small group of people.
Umushyikirano aims to be a leading example of participatory and inclusive governance. It is hoped that by directly engaging with their leaders, Rwandans feel part of the decision making that affects their lives. Umushyikirano also serves as a forum for Rwandans to hold their leaders and government to account.
The word Umuganda can be translated as ‘coming together in common purpose to achieve an outcome’. In traditional Rwandan culture, members of the community would call upon their family, friends, and neighbors to help them complete a difficult task.
Ubudehe refers to the long-standing Rwandan practice and culture of collective action and mutual support to solve problems within a community, according to a recent academic research paper. It is not known exactly when Ubudehe was first practiced, but it is thought to date back more than a century. The focus of traditional Ubudehe was mostly on cultivation.
The word Ingando comes, from the verb ‘kugandika’, which means going to stay in a place far from one’s home, often with a group, for a specific reason.