Focus on agroforestry in Rwanda

The Centre opened a new office in Rwanda on 18 May 2010 hosted by the Institute of Scientific and Technological Research (IRST) in Huye District.

Speaking at the inauguration, Director General of the World Agroforestry Centre, Dennis Garrity said he believed that the 20 years the Centre has been working in Rwanda was a prelude to making agroforestry science and practice available to the majority of farmers in Rwanda.

Rwanda's Environment Minister, Stanislas Kamanzi, said research institutions play an important role in providing new technologies and technical support that is needed to help Rwanda reach its development goals.

"We welcome this partnership between the Centre and IRST," he said. "The challenge is now upon scientists from both institutions to produce user friendly and adoptable information to help the rural population help increase their production," he said.

The new facilities in Butare will be used by Centre researchers to advance agroforestry and related research and development in Rwanda as well as neighbouring Burundi and the Eastern Democratic Republic of Congo.

Director General of IRST, Dr Nduwayezu, expressed hope that this new arrangement would boost cooperation between the Centre and Rwanda.

"We hope this will fast track research and practices in development for various priority needs in Rwanda, especially agroforestry, land rehabilitation, water management, soil fertility and biodiversity conservation," he said.

Dennis Garrity said the opening of the new offices gave his Centre not only a chance to expand its centre's work but also to be part of a program that can have great impact in Rwanda. While in Rwanda, Garrity took the opportunity to visit various government ministries and share his vision for Evergreen Agriculture in Rwanda.

The Centre is currently involved in several projects in Rwanda, including the East Africa Dairy Development (EADD) project, Rwanda irrigation master plan and Landcare activities. To see a video presentation, highlighting these, visit: