UMH in Rwanda
13 September 2023
UMH International Development Cooperation Volunteer Program in Rwanda
This program aims to train volunteers in development cooperation on both theoretical and practical levels by carrying out related actions. All UMH groups are eligible to take part, including Faculty & Research Personnel, Administrative & Services Personnel, and students as well. This program has taken place every year since 2011 (except for its suspension during the pandemic) during the summer months of July, August, and September.
During each of these three months, a group of volunteers travels to the UMH installations in Rwanda, which are found in Nemba (Gakenke district, Northern Province), and there they remain for some 4 weeks, during which they engage in training and development cooperation endeavors.
- The objectives of the training activities include:
- Provide the participants with a comprehensive vision of social volunteering on local and international levels, within the realities of an unequal world.
- Contribute to the training of people committed to transforming our planet, which is part of the framework of the Sustainable Development Goals from the 2030 Agenda of the United Nations.
- The development cooperation actions roll out in different environments:
- Provision of training for Rwandan educational professionals from primary and secondary schools.
- Educational reinforcement for students at said schools.
- Support for Rwandan health personnel employed at Nemba Hospital.
- Socio-health support for patients at Nemba hospital and their family members.
Calls to volunteer in Rwanda
Summer 2023 call
The Vice Rectorate for International Relations at the Miguel Hernández University of Elche hereby publishes the places available for participation in the tenth edition of the UMH International Development Cooperation Volunteer Program in Rwanda for summer 2023 (UMH-GVA Agreement).
(22 December 2022): Click this link to see the text of the call
The period for submitting applications shall remain open through January 31, 2023.
Summer 2022 call
The call for 2022 is being substituted by the International Development Cooperation Volunteer program (CID) run by the UMH. Further information is available on the CID webpage.
Summer 2021 call
The call for 2021 has also been canceled due to the Covid-19 pandemic and the ongoing uncertainty regarding the moment when greater normalcy returns. Part of this decision is because the UMH does not want to spread the virus further in Rwanda.
Summer 2020 call
The call for 2020 has been canceled due to the Covid-19 pandemic and the uncertainty regarding when greater normalcy returns. Part of this decision is because the UMH does not want to spread the virus further in Rwanda.
Nonetheless, the university is carrying out other actions to protect locals against Covid-19 in Nemba, Rwanda.
Summer 2019 call
Included among the notable activities carried out during this edition of the program was the educational communication project at the ESSA Ruhengeri Public High School located in the city of Musanze in Rwanda. At that institution, UMH volunteers taught radio journalism classes to a group of students and faculty. As a result of these efforts, the school launched a school radio program.
Summer 2018 call
UMH volunteers provided teaching support at both schools, giving classes of English, biology, mathematics, physical education, as well as other subjects, in addition to training faculty at the Higher School of Sciences of Musanze in computer science and advanced English. Tasks at the Nemba Hospital included training its health personnel and providing support for specific units, including physiotherapy and mental health, in addition to social and healthcare for its psychiatric and pediatric patients. Moreover, efforts were made on other specific programs, such as the compilation of audiovisual material for a documentary and design work for the UMH Headquarters in Rwanda Chair webpage.
Summer 2017 Call
New (May 3, 2017)
The Vice Rectorate for International Relations at the Miguel Hernández University of Elche has published the schedule for personal and language interviews for interested participants in the UMH Volunteerism program in Rwanda for summer 2017. The Interviews will take place next Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday (May 8-10) at the times shown on this document.
April 12, 2017 – El Vicerrectorado de Relaciones Internacionales de la Universidad Miguel Hernández (UMH) de Elche publica el listado definitivo de solicitudes admitidas y excluidas en la convocatoria verano 2017 del programa de Voluntariado en Ruanda de la UMH.
Las fechas de entrevistas, tanto de idiomas como personales, se publicarán en esta misma web la primera semana de mayo, a la vuelta de vacaciones.
El Vicerrectorado de Relaciones Internacionales de la UMH publica el listado provisional de solicitudes admitidas, excluidas y pendientes de subsanar en la convocatoria de Voluntariado UMH en Ruanda para el verano de 2017. Se concede hasta el día 21 de marzo de 2017 para subsanar los errores indicados y presentar alegaciones, mediante instancia “Expone-Solicita” dirigida al Vicerrector de Relaciones Internacionales a través de Registro General o Auxiliares o por cualquier otro procedimiento establecido en la Ley 39/2015, de 1 de octubre.
Aquellos miembros de la UMH que aparecen en el listado provisional como aceptados no deben realizar ningún trámite hasta la publicación del listado definitivo de solicitudes admitidas, que se realizará una vez concluido el periodo de alegaciones.
The UMH Volunteerism Program in Rwanda is a joint initiative between the Vice Rectorate for International Relations and the UMH Headquarters in Rwanda Chair. 2017 will represent the seventh edition of a project that permits UMH community members to conduct stays lasting about four weeks during summer in Rwanda. The program strives to fulfill a threefold objective:
- Improve the lives of the inhabitants of the hills of Nemba, helping hospitalized patients, giving classes to students and teachers from the schools there, and educating the local population about issues concerning public health.
- Introduce the UMH community to the realities of the third world.
- Train its participants about the reality of development assistance, cooperation successes and failures, and the various methods of assistance.
The application period remains open until February 24, 2017. The complete text about the call is available here.
Important: Informative sessions on Feb 13, 2017
|Monday, February 13, 2017|
|Orihuela – Desamparados||Room1.4, Tudemir Building||10:00 a.m.|
|Elche||Salón de Grados, La Galia Building||12:00 p.m.|
|Sant Joan||Room 8, Fco. Javier Balmis Building||2:00 p.m.|
Frequently asked questions
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- What does the project consist of? The volunteerism program in Rwanda consists of stays lasting approximately four weeks within that country, located in the heart of Africa, to participate in UMH development cooperation projects.
- Who is eligible? All UMH community members: students, faculty (PDI), staff (PAS), and alumni.
- When do the stays take place? During summer. For 2017, there are three calls, one in July, another in August, and the latter in September. Each stay lasts approximately four weeks.
- How many volunteers make up each group? In 2017, a total of 24 persons will participate, 8 in each group. One person from each group serves as its coordinator, which is a volunteer who has participated in this program in an earlier edition, and who is responsible for coordinating the group before and during their stay.
- What is the deadline for presenting my application? February 24 (2017), at the UMH General Registry, auxiliary registries, or the universede.
- What are the requirements? First and foremost is to be a member of the UMH community. Depending upon the modality chosen, the language requirements (English and/or French) vary. In addition to other documentation specified in each call (Curriculum vitae, National ID card photocopy, etc.), a program each candidate proposes must be presented in the area/s the candidate wishes to act, and on how it is to be carried out.
- In what format are the training programs presented? Each program must be an individual effort and based on the area of intervention selected by each candidate for providing training in Rwanda of approximately 30 hours throughout the 4 weeks in the country. A written presentation of the program must be between 4-6 pages in length. Further information is listed in the call.
- What modalities may be presented?
- A. Educational reinforcement for students enrolled in the schools of San Juan De Nkumba, oriented towards the field of exact sciences (physics, biology, chemistry, mathematics, information technology, athletics).
- B. Educational reinforcement for students enrolled in the schools of Nemba-1 (languages, natural sciences, geography, mathematics, physics, information technology, athletics…).
- C. Support for Rwandan healthcare personnel at the Nemba hospital (physiotherapy, neuropsychology, psychology & psychiatry, laboratory techniques or health management, infrastructure maintenance and installation…).
- D. Socio-healthcare for patients and relatives at the Nemba hospital: play-training workshops for children or other patients, hygiene and/or health education, teaching of healthy habits…
- E. Training of Rwandan educational personnel for schools in Nemba and San Juan de Nkumba: training for teachers in English, information technology, pedagogy, family planning, athletic strategies…
- F. Coordination of volunteer groups: participation experience from previous editions of the volunteer program will be valued.
- Note: Although the aforementioned areas are priority areas, new suggestions and ideas in other areas may be accepted provided that they contribute to improving the project. Furthermore, selection as a volunteer does not mean the project that such volunteer presented will be carried out. The projects presented shall permit the Assessment Commission to classify and subsequently choose the projects that will be carried out.
- I have no language-level certification. Does this mean I am ineligible to apply? Language accreditation, in addition to that from official certification (the Spanish Official School of languages or certification recognized by CRUE), can be validated by language-level interviews given by the UMH or certification of language levels or courses given by public Spanish universities. Applicants undergo language-level interviews in the language they choose.
- How are the volunteer positions awarded? The call specifies the scoring criteria and the importance of group multidisciplinarity. In short, the applicants are assessed using the following criteria:
- Specific training in the field wherein the applicant wishes to participate (1 point)
- Teaching experience or ability (1 point)
- Language knowledge (1 point)
- Training program presented (1 point)
- Training in cooperation (1 point)
- Participation in cooperation projects and/or links to charitable organizations (1 point)
- Suitability of the position the applicant opts for (4 points): This assessment is made based on a personal interview. Since interrelationships between the distinct backgrounds of the volunteers are included among the objectives of the project, the Selection Committee will prioritize the existence of a balance between qualifications and specialties of the participants selected so that the makeup of each group encompasses various areas of training.
- Do I have to pay anything? Accommodations and living expenses, as well as group travel within the country, are covered by the UMH. For airfare, and as per the conditions specified in the call, the UMH provides assistance of 700 euros per person, with the volunteer assuming any further costs for this, and an advance of 150 euros is paid to the volunteer once selected. Vaccinations, insurance, travel visas, and other expenses are borne by the volunteer.
- Do I need to vaccinate myself? Yes. Currently, in order to enter Rwanda, the only required vaccination is for yellow fever. Hospitals can inform you about which others are recommended before traveling there.
- Are there other risks I must be aware of? Rwanda, like many other countries, does not have the health resources that we are accustomed to in Spain. Hence, obeying and following all recommendations by the group coordinator and the person responsible for the project, Mariano Pérez Arroyo, is important, in addition to attending the informative sessions held before traveling.
- Do I need to acquire insurance? Yes, the details of which are detailed later on. The UMH will be responsible for managing it.
- What are the accommodations for the volunteers like? The UMH has a residence hall located in the Northern Province of Rwanda, in the Nemba District. This residence has all the comforts, and is next to the Nemba schools and hospital.
- With whom will we work? Once on the ground, the volunteers will be under the tutelage of the director of the UMH Headquarters in Rwanda Chair, Mariano Pérez Arroyo, who has more than 20 years of experience there. Depending upon your area of participation, you will coordinate more with either teachers or health personnel.
- Where can I obtain more information? In the complete text of the call, and above all in the informative sessions held in February (check the top of this page to consult their schedules). You may also send us an email to . At https://internacional.umh.es/en/cooperacion-y-voluntariado/voluntariado-en-ruanda/, we have put together a collection of testimonies and reports about the program.
- ¿May I contact a volunteer who has participated in Rwanda to ask him/her questions? Due to Spanish legislation concerning the protection of data, we cannot make the contact information of any volunteer public, but you can write to us at , and provide your consent for a volunteer to contact you, and we will find a person who has participated and who is willing to help you resolve possible concerns.[/wpex]
Further information and previous calls
Testimonies and information from the radio ‘Ruanda, el quinto campus’
- Lucía Asensi, voluntaria en Rwanda: “Aprendí la importancia de compartir todo aquello que tengas para ayudar a alguien que lo necesite”
- Testimonios de Alumnis que han participado en el programa de voluntariado de la UMH en Ruanda.
Service of International Relations, Development Cooperation and Volunteerism
La Galia Building – 2nd floor
+34 96 665 8683