Ever since the beginning of time, man has proved himself an incredible and strange creature. The cavemen didn’t want to settle for fruits and grass, so he tried meat, he created fire from stones, he created clothes from skins and we can name a lot more. Man has gone to the moon, created electricity, cars and you name it.
I believe that man has an incredible power that burns within his core from his very first day. The power to think; to imagine and discover the unknown and the unchartered. Man, with this peculiar ability, was able to make the world that we see today. This power is vested to every single man no matter the race and space; every man including the African.
I am from Rwanda; a small country in the heart of Africa. I grew up like any other child; obeying and listening to parents. And in Africa, we do not only have two parents – the whole society has a say and influence in the lives of the younger ones. Therefore, we were called to listen to society and we were told who we are, what we should do, and what we should become. “You should be a doctor, or lawyer, or dentist, or an engineer,” and the list was just that short. And, we were sent off to boarding schools knowing that the only way to make our society proud was to check one of the items from the list.
Dominique Uwase Alonga : Winner of the 2016 #Blog4Dev Contest
Few years later, there is a crisis. We are not who we are and we do not know where to go. We have suffocated our talents and the greatest power of all; our ability to think and innovate. We are standing stagnant and we are unhappy. We have slowly killed our potential and are desperate to revive it. Several generations before us have suffered the same consequences but new generations shouldn’t.
The only path for Rwanda’s development today is to empower young people to value their talents and their abilities to innovate. At the end of the day, I believe that we know deep inside what we could do from our passions, our hidden talents and our innovations. These are the things that will give us lasting and fulfilling jobs – these are the sources of real sustainable solutions for Africa. As long as schools and education systems set a path for us and force us to follow it, Rwanda will not rise; we will never have discoveries such as Einstein’s or Ford or Edison’s. The power lies within us and we desire to be empowered.
I dream of a future generation that will be encouraged to innovate and to find solutions within themselves not only to develop themselves but change their nations. I believe young Rwandans have potential. The real solution is to create platforms or encourage the education systems to let young people thrive in what they believe in.
This blog is one of the winning entries of the 2016 #Blog4Dev contest. Other winning entries include: