HOLIDAYS IN MUSEUMS’ NEW INGREDIENT – THE CARNIVAL
This year’s two weeks ‘Holidays in Museums’ program is one of its kind. The new and unique ingredient – the carnival distinguished it from the previous Holidays held in Museums since its introduction in 2012. Built on the theme “my culture my pride”, the program was officially launched with a carnival around Huye town and back to the Ethnographic Museum where children take their daily lessons on the Rwandan cultural heritage.
On Friday 16th December, 2016, from 11:00am, clad in traditional attire with traditional objects including calabashes, pots, baskets, milk pots, gourds etc on their heads, the youngsters proudly took on the trail around Huye town, drumming, singing and dancing to the traditional songs, chanting how proudly they will uphold their culture up to the future generations. The over 150 children put Huye movements to a standstill. Passersby stopped, business closed, markets attendants left their merchants unattended just to come and watch the ‘unusual event’ (just as one of them remarked) that was taking place around their town.
Children made two stop - overs, performing their hearts out, enduring the scorching sun, just to showcase what they had learnt in just five days. Most of the Rwandan cultural values were portrayed through their performances; heroism and patriotism through singing and dancing, unity and reconciliation through the traditional wrestling – kunyabanwa….etc.
Joined by Miss Heritage 2016, Huye District representatives, Museums Director of Research and Publications, and the general public from across the country, the children exhibited resilience to the scorching sun just to carry on their journey to the Ethnographic Museum where the carnival was concluded.
According to Jérôme Karangwa, Museums Director of Research and Publication, this years’ ‘Holidays in Museums’ program proves that children are gradually understanding the value of their culture, considering the passion they portrayed hence the program’s goal which is to instill the Rwandan culture, history and values among the young generation so that they grow up to become patriotic citizens.
“We want to prepare the young generation so that our museums would have people to manage them in the future, the teens we train show potential and talent to learn about our culture and history. We, therefore, believe that this would help them live well in the future,” said Karangwa.
The children are trained in traditional dances, weaving, pottery, singing traditional songs, milk churning Kuvugira Inka, riddles, among other things that characterized the Rwanda traditional culture, they enjoy them and he hopes that the country will have a better generation grounded in our culture.
Among other children, 13 year old Descendant Uwase astounded guests with her extraordinary singing skill. Besides her skill, she also affirmed that she attended the program in order to acquire more skills even in other fields including making ornaments, dancing and singing, weaving; etc which she hopes would empower her into a respectable typical Rwandan woman. She goes further to reveal that she dreams to work in Museums which she trusts will help her uphold her culture through generations.
“I hope that I will keep learning this and my dream is to work in museums so that we keep exhibiting our culture. I am ready to contribute to the growth and sustainability of our culture,” she asserted.
Rwanda Museums’ initial goal is to educate children on their cultural heritage but also empower them traditional skills that will help them develop their economic life through the traditional skills acquired. Seeing the children look forward to this goal is such a rewarding element in which the Institute will always pride.