Sunday, November 6, 2011

Millenium Village Whaaa Whaa?

Yesterday, 96% of us went to the Millenium Village here in Rwanda (I like using percentages that may or may not be completely incorrect to make myself sound more legitimate). What is the Millenium Village you may be asking yourself? No worries, I got your back...

The Millenium Village project was started by the Earth Institute at Columbia University under the guidance of Jeffrey Sachs. The village project uses the eight Millenium Goals to frame its objectives (end hunger/poverty/HIV, TB, Malaria, other dieseases/ reduce maternal and child mortality/ promote education and gender equality and global partnership/ ensure environmental sustainability). It uses evidence-based techniques to bring one village to complete the Millenium Development Goals. See its website/wikipedia for more information...

To get a tour of the village it costs 30 USD... I was surprised in its overly touristy feel. We had a tour guide take us to meet of the village's farmers, the medical facility, basket weaving women, and in the end we saw traditional dances. At first, I was incredibly dissapointed that the entire village and everyone in it had become a tourist attraction... I still don't know how I feel about it.

Something did change that made me happy with my visit. Once you got past the overly touristy feel, I could see something I have yet to see here in my stay... a sense of genuine happiness and peace. The village is determined to bring unity to the survivors of genocide and the perpetrators. I thought this was impossible, and though I was only there for five hours... there was this sense of peace. What gave me this feeling? I honestly could not tell you... Mostly because there was no specific instance or thing that made me feel this... It was just there.

No comments:

Post a Comment