Kigali Youth Festival Exhibition Promotes Originality, Creativity.

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The Kigali Youth Festival Exhibition, part of the Car Free Zone at Imbuga City Walk, is an exhibition honoring the innovation and entrepreneurship of young people. It opened on January 22 and runs through January 26.

This week-long spectacular, organized by the Ministry of Youth and Arts in partnership with the City of Kigali authority, has attracted 80 exhibitors, 40 of whom are from Kigali city and the remaining 40 of whom are from different provinces.

Originally intended only for young people in Kigali, the decision to open it up to participants from throughout the nation was viewed as a critical first step toward creating a more inclusive platform and evidence of Rwanda’s dedication to encouraging the development of its youth.

The exhibition covers four exciting categories: manufacturing, agro-processing, innovation and technology, and service providers.

                        

Picture Source: The New Times

A variety of goods are available at various booths, such as handcrafted bags, sanitization soaps, locally made clothes, shoes, hair products, bracelets, artifacts, drawings, paintings, and electronic devices. There are also unique floors made from pumpkin seeds and “sambaza” flour from Lake Kivu, among many other materials.

Numerous exhibitors are supporters of Youth Konnect, an event that offers these business owners a venue to showcase their goods and a chance for peer-to-peer networking, marketing, and cross-training.

A 27-year-old shoemaker in the manufacturing sector named Eric Uyisenga was observed at a show. 2019 saw the start of his business after he finished a year-long course.

With his newfound expertise, Uyisenga makes enough money to support his family by making leather belts, playing balls, and other types of shoes. Despite their achievements, Uyisenga draws attention to the dearth of training facilities and markets in the industry and implores the government to set up specialized leather processing schools in Rwanda to increase the production of leather goods created domestically.

To lower import costs and improve professional development chances for instructors and skilled workers alike, he further underlined the importance of having local machinery.

Information technology support specialist Elysee Nayihiki installs necessary devices like the Braille screen reader for visually impaired individuals and applications like “Jay software,” a high-level programming language suitable for data analysis and algorithm development.

“We look forward to organising workshops in schools, to extend skills to young people to increase the number of skilled users, which aligns with the country’s plan to have a more skilled workforce,” he added.

Yvette Uwamariya is also an exhibitor who specializes in embroidery, which is the craft of decorating fabric by applying thread or yarn with a needle.

“The crafts predominantly are about Rwandan culture, featuring elements such as cows, drums, traditional hairstyles, Inanga usage, and traditional attire; however, our focus varies depending on trends and the prevailing cultural demands,” she said.

The exhibitors stressed the value of these kinds of gatherings in uplifting the next generation, promoting teamwork, and stimulating creativity.

 

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