Thursday, 3 October 2013

René Claude from Burundi visited Helsinki

René Claude Niyonkuru visiting the Finnish Comics Society.  Johanna Rojola and
 Leif Packalen were both trainers in the 2010 ToT  workshop in Ngozi, Burundi.

René Claude Niyonkuru from L’Association pour la Paix et les Droits de l’Homme (APDH)  in Burundi attended a human rights seminar in Helsinki in September and showed us some new grassroots comics. These very vivid and accomplished comics are used in village meetings in Northern Burundi in APDH's activities aimed at community awareness. Samples of the comics are shown below.

During René Claude's brief visit we also had discussions on how to continue our cooperation project in Burundi. APDH would like us to train more comics trainers as the grassroots comics idea has been received with a lot of enthusiasm in their network. Finding funding for such training and its related activities is the problem. Development cooperation funding is going down, and big and established NGOs seem to take an increasing share of available money. 

Summary: A couple beats up a thief after catching him red-handed. Neighbours intervene to calm down the situation. Later, the village council orders the couple to pay for medical care of the thief and they also risk serious penalties. When going home they deeply regret beating up the thief. Comic by Rebecca Citegetse of ADPH, Muremera.

A teacher rapes a student and makes her pregnant. He tries to cover up with money. Eventually the police is involved and the teacher is brought to justice and punished. Comic made by M. Didace of APDH, Gashinkawa.
An employer mistreats his servant badly. The servant decides to go to the village council to complain. The council discusses the matter with the employer and reminds him of employment laws. He promises to correct his behaviour. Comic by Nduwayezy Godefroid of APDH.

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