Regenerative Post COVID-19 Recovery Measures: The Case of Rwanda
Governments worldwide are scrambling to combat both the biological and economic effects of the global COVID-19 pandemic. By using Rwanda as a case study, this paper analyzes two of the existent home-grown poverty alleviation initiatives for food security: Girinka (Have a cow) and Akarima k’igikoni (Kitchen Gardens). Using descriptive statistical data gathered during the pandemic in Rwanda’s capital, Kigali, we found rainwater collection practices already well established. We find that many households already separate waste, but that only some households in the peri-urban areas we investigated practice composting and home-gardening. We conclude with several recommendations on how the Rwandan government’s commitment to sustainable development and urban agglomeration in the Vision 2050 strategy can be achieved. Using already well-established policy mechanisms like the “Umudugudu” (=Village) network and the Akarima k’igikoni initiative, Rwanda can better weather the economic effects of the global pandemic. These mechanisms present a valuable opportunity for Rwandan businesses to invest in composting activities and regenerative practices in their buildings and waste management systems. Other developing countries can also learn valuable lessons from an environmentally sustainable and home-grown poverty alleviation policy.
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