Rwanda Internship: Week 2
GETTING USED TO LIFE IN KIGALI By Borja
The second week at Kigali, Rwanda, began as the first one finished; with the whole group enjoying the incredible experience that we are all living here in central-Africa. It needs to be said that we have all experienced a change; a change from the first week where everything was new for everyone to a period of beginning to get use to our new life here. We feel safer and used to the city and that helps to increase even more the relax and happiness of the whole group.
During this week, David with his wine company has been working on the design of a website as they did not have one yet. Anna has been in charge of analysing the market in which her company is involved; analysing competitors and recent trends, while I have been updating the business plan of my coffee company as well as designing new flyers to be distributed to potential customers.
All this work that we are making for our companies is helping us develop different business and management skills; David is getting use to work with different software systems that he did not know before, Anna is developing a new and more productive way of market research and researches in general and I am learning incredibly about business plans in general and how to develop the general approach of the company and its objectives, developing also new marketing and flyers design skills.
Generally, we have all experienced the differences between the way European countries Rwanda work. These differences can be clearly reviewed in differences in punctuality; we are therefore getting used to wait for half and hour or even more for the different meetings with entrepreneur and staff that we are having. These differences can be seen in restaurants as well. Moreover, linked to that, we are experiencing a slight lack of productivity as well; it is easy to find on many businesses one person working and five people just looking at how he/she works instead of giving a hand. This is something that we have seen as a clear cultural clash to which, after two weeks in here we are all beginning to get used to.
Finally, apart from each one´s work on the different projects, during this week we have spent the afternoons after work, living unforgettable experiences. It all began on Saturday meeting the very nice children of the Root Foundation (NGO who makes and excellent work helping street children by teaching and playing with them) with whom we spent the day playing and dancing. Moreover, we have learnt a lot about the Rwanda´s history in general by visiting the Kigali Memorial Centre and two churches where many people suffered the horror of the genocide (these places made us think about what went wrong with humanity to let these things happen and made us wish similar things won’t happen ever again). Additionally, the Kigali Natural Museum (Kandt House) allowed us to see diverse animals like snakes and even a crocodile! Finally, we have not missed the opportunity that the Kigali´s cheap prices were offering us, therefore, we have made a “tour” through the city bars and restaurants enjoying really good local and European meals.
We all hope that the coming weeks will be as awesome as the last!
Borja Campuzano Barbadillo; International Business and Management at Newcastle University.