Africa We Want


Jean Claude, originally from Rwanda, moved to Belgium in 2006 to earn a Bachelor’s degree in Electronics. With the move, came some adjustments. “It wasn’t easy, life was different in Belgium. It took some time to get used to the environment, but connecting with people helped me cope with the changes,” Jean Claude reflects on his journey.

By: Arnold Rukundo, IOM Rwanda Labour Mobility and Social Inclusion Intern and Robert Kovacs, IOM Rwanda Communications Officer.

Upon completing the course, he quickly started a thriving career as a railway technology specialist. When 17 years into his Belgian chapter, Jean Claude heard about an opportunity to travel back to Rwanda to share his skills, he didn’t hesitate to sign up for the programme.

Funded by the Belgian Directorate-General for Development Cooperation and Humanitarian Aid, the Diaspora Engagement Project in the Technical, Vocational Education and Training (TVET) programme, managed by the International Organization for Migration (IOM), offers skilled migrants a chance to visit their home in Rwanda to provide technical trainings at the eight Integrated Regional Polytechnic Colleges (IPRC) across the country.

“Wherever Rwandans go, they are exposed to new technologies and knowledge. There is nobody better to bring it back to Rwanda than us.”

“In my journey, I’ve come to realize that the practical aspects of my work are different from what we study in school,” Jean Claude explains. “I love sharing insights gained throughout my career because you can’t find these lessons in textbooks. Railway technology is particularly important in Rwanda because it can make the transportation system fast and accessible for everyone. The local impact will be great, and it would create many employment opportunities.”

Author: MANZI


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