BI WORLDWIDE's Event Professionals Teresa Allen and Katrina Rannard embarked on a four day trip to Rwanda, investigating the destination and what it has to offer for the Meetings, Incentives, Conferences and Events industry.
BI WORLDWIDE has created the in:sight project as the company feels it is important to visit and educate itself on untapped destinations to truly assess with its own eyes, and where appropriate, add new destinations to the portfolio for recommendation to clients.
In:sight to Rwanda has proved to be a true success story and in this series of blogs it will showcase how this country ticks almost every box!
Before setting off on the voyage of discovery, BI WORLDWIDE learnt that age and lack of up-to-date knowledge plays a key role in perceptions of the country. It is true that in the past Rwanda has endured tremendous pain. In 1994 the inhabitants experienced a tribal unrest where 100 days of conflict ensued. The impact and outcome of this has only made the country that much stronger. While you may not be aware, Rwanda has become the phoenix that has risen from the ashes to become an emerging star of Africa.
In order to understand the country’s history and address the subject that appears to be holding people back from travelling to Rwanda, Katrina and Teresa visited The Kigali Genocide Memorial. This was a very poignant moment for them both and provided a good grounding and understanding of the past history in order to acknowledge how the country has reformed and made positive steps for the future.
Whilst at the Memorial, Katrina and Teresa were shown videos of survivors sharing their personal stories. Teresa comments: “It is still so hard to comprehend what happened in Rwanda back in 1994. The introductory video of personal accounts was emotionally powerful and it was hard not to empathise and shed a tear with those being interviewed. Whilst the museum is a sombre exhibition to witness, the concluding video of the same survivors from the initial video gave tremendous hope for humanity. The people of Rwanda live and breathe love, unity, community and compassion. There is no divide, no hate, no revenge; just a true sense of peace and moving forwards together for the better. We left feeling inspired and in awe of a nation that has overcome adversity with exceptional positivity.”
In one of the videos, a local shared: “We now look at what people need and not what they are. If you share hatred, hatred grows, if you share love, love grows.”