Elie Kwiravusa, Butembo

Together, let’s build our country!
  Watch or read Elie's story below:

“Raise awareness about the problems we have”

Elie is only 21 years old, but he already possesses a great understanding of his country’s difficulties. In his association, he works “to raise awareness among (young people) about the problems we have, for them to be actors of our community’s transformation”. The idea is simple.
We supervise young people, it’s our mission.
In order to bring economic and cultural dynamism back in his country and his city of Butembo, the effect on youth is essential for him. His method? Meeting and sharing.

“Together, let’s build our country”

The objective of Elie’s action is not only to offer to young people a space to meet, but also to stimulate their creativity, to show them all they are capable of - for them and for their country.
We conduct actions, reflections, forums. We organise festivals which give to young people space to show the best of themselves.
And everything is put in place so that everyone feels welcome: ” In this festival, we have sections and a specific theme. This year, we are talking about “Together, let’s build our country”. There are sections: poems, comedies, sketches, budding geniuses, traditional dancing…”. The objective of those meetings is simple and important at the same time. Elie sums it up nicely: “to give to young people time to express themselves, to think, but also to implement and to share with others what they think about the reconstruction of our country”.

Results and awareness

The effects of his actions, Elie can already see. ”In 2011, we organised a forum and we invited all the young people to this forum.”
There was one person in particular who had experience and skills in electricity but was doing nothing with it because he didn’t have any openings and connections. Through our action, he realised it and we oriented him towards authorities and trustworthy people who supported him.
“Now, he is teaching young people in a professional centre on how to work with electricity”. In the end, it’s still his country’s youth who is at the centre of his action. By showing them their own potential, by supporting them in their moves, he offers to each of them a chance, and allows them to realise the importance of everyone’s commitment inside the community.

An ambitious future

Elie is proud of those young people’s work even though it is sometimes overshadowed by other difficulties. “On the one hand, I feel quite accomplished and on the other hand, I am still concerned. A lot of errors were made, a lot of ignorance”. Those difficulties are nonetheless the reason why Elie continues his actions and keeps moving forward.
I still have the will to keep on creating, of going to the next level and improving what we have already done.
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