Red Rocks Rwanda
Internationally renowned for their gorillas and for the successful conservation programme, Rwanda is a rising tourism destination and the home of an inspiring grassroots project, whose goal is to combine local sustainable development with environmental conservation and social innovation.
Red Rocks Rwanda was born, from the determination of its founder Greg Bakunzi, as a visionary project that aims to make the local communities the direct beneficiaries of tourism activities through their active involvement in tourism.
Many are the activities that tourists can choose to engage with, such as banana beer or basket-weaving workshops or countryside bike tours, which are all led by local people.
Tourists can stay at the main campsite in Muzanze district, near Nyakinama village, choosing between the broad and comfortable family tents located among the cool trees of the large site or the recently built private bungalows.
Music and art can be experienced in many forms beyond the planned options available at the Red Rock’s hub. The opportunity to join in with a live session will come to you in the street, while a group of local women start dancing around Marie Louise’s drums, rehearsing for the next cultural performance.
Several local artists were born here; in fact, young people are constantly being inspired to learn new skills and to invest in their creativity and their future.
Empowerment of women and social development are natural outcomes of the process.
Red Rocks Rwanda is a physical hub that has gathered many local artisans – especially women and mothers – who have been provided not only with a better and more visible marketplace for their handicrafts, but also with an opportunity to gather with other women, to learn, and to strengthen their professional skills and their support networks.
Many women like Polina have started learning their main occupation here, attending workshops offered by other experienced women – the same workshops that the tourists can attend. A couple of artisan cooperatives have also grown up organically in the hub in recent years.
The hub was created in the first place to empower the local community members by providing them with economic alternatives and options for their social and professional life.
Tourism is the main tool used to connect the projects, the dreams and the people, and while this offers in-depth authentic experiences to the visitors, it also provides the local residents with choices. As a consequence, their cultural views broaden and this allows them to dream bigger while they increase their income.
Tourists and volunteers can be part of this amazing Community-Based Tourism project.
Just tune in, zoom-in, and experience the other Rwanda, with the Red Rocks.