Woman of the Week

Friday, January 28, 2011


In the past few days I have had bloggers block, I know there are many things that could I could post but I could not figure it out. I pointed this out to the beau and he mentioned that we should try and showcase women in Africa. His exact sentiments "Could be a good form of raising the profile of strong African women. I have to thank him for this lovely idea. Hence our first woman of the week is Jeanette Kagame

Jeannette Kagame is the first lady of Rwanda. Born on the 10th of August 1962, she is a mother of four. She became the first lady in 2000 when her husband Paul Kagame became president of Rwanda. Rwanda is a country that has gone through a lot in the past few decades but what we most remember is the genocide which happened between April and June 1994. During the genocide approximately 800,000 people were killed in 100 days.


With husband Paul Kagame meeting the Queen

Mrs Kagame through her philanthropic work is working with women and children of the genocide to build a bigger, greater Rwanda. A great cause for her is HIV/AIDS and works to create awareness and mobilise resources for this cause. She is a founding member of the Organisation of African First Ladies OAFLA which was started in 2002. Apart from that, she started the Imbuto Foundation which supports the development of a healthy, educated and prosperous Rwanda.


Launch of the Treat Every Child as your Own Campaign

The first lady is stunning. She always looks polished and her features are so beautiful especially her height. At 49 years old with 4 children she has kept very well. In all the pictures I have seen of her, she mostly has her hair in a bun and I believe she is relaxed. She favours the traditional clothing of Rwandese women called Mishanana. This is very similar to the Indian Sari but is made of two separate pieces i.e. a long flowy skirt with a matching scarf that is tied like a sash on one shoulder. The fabric that they use should be light like chiffon.

Excerpt from an Interview with Celina Schocken

The first lady of Rwanda explains how her country is defining itself post-genocide and the role Rwandan women are playing in the healing of society and the building of a nation.

Jeannette Kagame: I believe things are getting better, although we still have a long way to go. We also have to keep fighting for girls and women without forgetting that in many of our countries, especially in Rwanda where we had to start from zero, boys also need to be supported and men need to be mobilized to be part of the struggle for healthier, better-educated families. At the Imbuto Foundation, we have 1,000 disadvantaged boys and girls on scholarship, and with the understanding that girls face specific barriers to performance, each year we reward the best performing girls in every district to motivate them toward academic excellence. This is our way of contributing to government efforts. In an environment where there is so much need, every effort counts. It is particularly important that Rwandans be involved in solutions to our healthcare challenges as a nation. With committed governments, involved communities and effective coordination of global and regional partnerships, I have no doubt that Rwanda and Africa will win the battle for healthy, educated and skilled citizens.


Rwandese Children

16 comments:

Anonymous said...

Real Beauty Of Africa

Anonymous said...

A true African queen, forget Elizabeth.

Nyachomba Kariuki said...

@Both anonys...Glad you enjoyed the post...we shall continue showcasing beautiful strong African women

Anonymous said...

Hi Nyachomba,

Interesting blog. I'd like to point out an error on one of the photo captions - Imbuto Foundation was not launched in New York.

The caption should read "Launch of the Treat Every Child as your Own Campaign".

Nyachomba Kariuki said...

@Anonymous....Thank you very much for pointing out this oversight...will correct it immediately. Cheers ;-)

Anonymous said...

Thank you Kariuki. The First Lady of Rwanda is a woman of character and she is a blessing to Rwanda. She has championed the cause of women especially the young to excel in schools and in other endeavors. Thumb up Mrs Kagame.

Imenagitero

Anonymous said...

Hey Nyachomba, lovely blog. Even lovelier is your portrayal of strong and empowering African women, of whom Jeannette Kagame is a true epitome. Her dynamic initiatives make her one of the most forward-thinking First Ladies on the planet.. Viva Lady J!

Anonymous said...

Hey Nyachomba, lovely blog. Even lovelier is your portrayal of strong and empowering African women, of whom Jeannette Kagame is a true epitome. Her dynamic initiatives make her one of the most forward-thinking First Ladies on the planet, and we Rwandan ladies are blessed to have her.. Viva Lady J!

By,
LuckyRwandanGirl

Anonymous said...

Hello Nyachomba and thank u very much to nominate our queen. First Lady Jeannette is a guardian Angel to all rwandandan children espicially girls! we love her so much than we can say!! Blessings 2 her and to her family

Nyachomba Kariuki said...

@Imenagitero, Lady J/ LuckyRwandanGirl and Anonymous...I am glad you enjoyed the post, Lady Jeanette is a very amazing woman and her work to fight for Rwandan women and children is highly admirable.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for nominating our blessed First Lady, she really deserves it. She does her work humbly, she is also an innovative and positive person. We Rwandan women are very PROUD to have Mrs Janet Kagame as our First Lady.

Isheja

Gloria L. said...

This is a beautiful written piece..its truly a blessing to have her as our First Lady! Her positive spirit shines through everything she does..

Binagwaho Agnes said...

Jeanne Kagame is an incredible person who I admire for her commitment to social justice, and her devotion to family and friends and vulnerable women, youth and children. Over the years, I had the privilege of watching her raise her four children to be wonderful young people. As an activist and a boss, she inspired me in her ability to stand up for vulnerable persons while maintaining a realistic outlook on solutions for the future. Jeannette Kagame is an progressive African woman who has dedicated her life to ameliorating the human condition of poor persons in Africa. I am proud to nominate her as "The Natural Girls Guide to Beauty".

Nyachomba Kariuki said...

@Isheja, Gloria and Agnes..I am so pleased to see so many ladies who are so proud of their first lady. I feel like visiting Rwanda and visit some of the projects she is working on. She seems to be such a role model for many Rwandese ladies. She seems to have juggled motherhood, social work and being a leader very well.

finaflamingo1 said...

Our First Lady is not only a blessing to Rwandans but all african young girls to whom she is an important role model. God bless her and her beautiful work. Fina

finaflamingo1 said...

Our First Lady is not only a blessing to Rwandans but all african young girls to whom she is an important role model. God bless her and her beautiful work. Fina