Announcing DOT Rwanda’s 2020 -2021 Youth Leadership Advisory Board (YouthLAB)

DOT Rwanda is thrilled to announce the 2020 -2021 Youth Leadership Advisory Board (YouthLAB) members.

The YouthLAB team consists of six DOT Rwanda Alumni from across the country. They will play a key role in guiding DOT Rwanda’s current and future programs through a collaborative and interactive approach that prioritizes youth voices and the local context. The YouthLAB will capture new insights on youth realities, covering topics that include social entrepreneurship, digitally enabled jobs, digital business, community leadership, and gender-responsive approaches.

Over the course of eighteen months (July 2020 to December 2021), YouthLAB members will act as researchers, brand ambassadors, strategic council, and community builders for DOT Rwanda.

Meet the DOT Rwanda’s 2020 -2021 YouthLAB members:

Djamila  Mathu is a data scientist and a business enthusiast who has a passion for economics, renewable energy, and applying different technologies to improve the environment. Throughout her career, Djamila has worked for tech start-ups and multinational organizations,  and in academia where she applied her expertises in data science and business. She is passionate about youth empowerment and believes that young people can bring a positive change to their communities.

In 2012, Djamila was a DOT Rwanda’s ReachUp! Facilitator. She is the winner of Africa Grande Challenge 2018, a member of toastmaster Techy Talkers club,  World Youth Forum and Women in Engineering CMU. Djamila graduated from Carnegie Mellon University with a Master of Science in Electrical and Computer Engineering, class of 2018.

Amina Umuhoza is the CEO of Saye Company Ltd  and Founder of Dukataze – an initiative that empowers young Rwandan women and girls mentally, socially and economically to prevent early and unwanted pregnancies. 

Throughout her social entrepreneurial  journey, Amina has been recognized for various awards. In 2019, she was among the top 40 African Union Education Innovators, selected  for the Changemaker Exchange Program, Tony Elumelu Foundation  Entrepreneurship program’s seed capital, and among Rwanda’s Social Impact Champions by the Segal Family Foundation. 

Amina was also awarded as a runner up for DOT Rwanda’s 2019 Gera Ku Ntego competition. She is an Alumni of YALI

Amina is a highly experienced social entrepreneur and is ready to apply her knowledge as a DOT Rwanda’s YouthLAB member. 

Eric Josue Ishimwe is a social innovator and a finance professional who started FoodLine Rwanda – a multinational company specialized in the provision of non-organic agriculture produce and supply-chain in developing cities. 

He is an alumni of the Tony Elumelu Foundation  Entrepreneurship program and was also recognized as an abstract presenter for the 2018 Annual International Family Planning Conference in Kigali, Rwanda.

In January 2020, he published the book “The World of Big Lies” which was ranked 44 in March and 56 in April among the top 100 mostly reviewed political fictions on Amazon UK.

Eric’s life goal is to help build and support community development through social and digital transformation. He has mentored and trained over 2000 youth in ICT, finance and entrepreneurship.

Jeannette Umutoniwase is the founder of Inzira Dreamz Network, a social enterprise that manufactures affordable African bags, clothes and shoes. 

She is a graduate of DOT Rwanda’s StartUp! and social entrepreneur program. She is also an alumni of the KCB Foundation’s Igire programme award.

Jeannette is currently  a Youth Leader at Educate! in Kamonyi district where she works hand in hand with the Rwanda Education Board (REB) to train and facilitate teachers and students on the implications of the Competency Based Curriculum (CBC) in Entrepreneurship subject.

She is also pursuing a Bachelor’s degree in Public Relations at Christian University of Rwanda.

In 2018, she was among the top 40 young entrepreneurs in Rwanda selected by the Accelerator Academy. 

Jeannette is driven by her self-motivation to social transformation. One of her dreams is to see better change in wellbeing of African youth.

Alain Ibarushamaboko has over 7 years experience in the community and business development sector. He is the Chief Digital Strategist for Kigali Digital Garage, where his main roles are business coaching, leadership and technology skills training. 

Alain holds an advanced Diploma in Civil Engineering from Rwanda Polytechnic University majoring in water sanitation and technology. 

From 2018 to 2019, he was the Digital Opportunity Trust (DOT) Rwanda’s Digital Champion in Kigali City  where he contributed to transform citizens’ lives through digital skills training and adoption of life enhancing e-services, driving digital inclusion and growth. 

Alain is driven by his commitment to social entrepreneurship, and he believes that community members with ICT skills can provide solutions to existing daunting challenges.  

Anny Benilde Uwonkunda is a Corps Africa Volunteer in Rwanda. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Applied Statistics from the University of Rwanda. She is an energetic and enthusiastic individual  who enjoys a challenge and achieving personal goals. She is interested in the opportunity to learn new skills and to work with new technologies. 

At the University, she was the School Representative and then served as the Vice Speaker of the Board of Representatives, where her duties included advocating for her fellow students on different issues.  

From 2018 to 2019, Anny was the Digital Opportunity Trust ( DOT) Rwanda’s Digital Champion in the Northern Province of Rwanda, where she contributed to increase the digital literacy skills among community members, bridge the gender digital divide and drive digital adoption.  She was awarded as a #DOTYouth who inspires leadership through humility, pro-activity, self-confidence and enthusiasm.

Anny believes that “the Harder you work for something, the Greater you will feel when you Achieve it”.

The 2020 DOT Rwanda YouthLAB cohort will be working in four key functions:

  • Researchers: as researchers, the 2020 YouthLAB members will conduct desk and on-the-ground research and produce research documents, which will contribute to DOT Rwanda’s programming and global discussions on youth development.
  • Ambassadors: the YouthLAB team will be supported to represent DOT Rwanda at conferences and events and will contribute their voices through presentations, blogs, social media campaigns and other input.
  • Strategic council: YouthLAB will play a critical role in ensuring that DOT Rwanda’s work is relevant to women and youth, as we empower them with skills to leverage growing digital ecosystems and create new pathways for employment and digital opportunities. Over the course of eighteen months, YouthLAB members will contribute to DOT Rwanda’s program design and strategic direction. 
  • Learning and community building: The YouthLAB team will participate in virtual and face-to-face learning opportunities to deepen their knowledge as young leaders working with DOT Rwanda. They will receive professional development, including research, leadership, and public speaking training. They will also have the opportunity to network with youth leaders from across Africa, attend interesting networking events and conferences, and engage with diverse stakeholders, gain exposure to new ideas related to youth development, entrepreneurship, social enterprise, and digital technology.

We look forward to working together with our 2020- 2021 YouthLAB team!