Late July marks the beginning of a long break from school for children in Rwanda. Many of our students at Imbabazi return from boarding school excited to reunite with their friends and share stories from school. While there are plenty of chores to do, they find time to do what teenagers worldwide do: nothing! Or in Kinyarwanda: “Nacho.” After only two weeks of vacation, many students are off to summer internships. We have three students in a restaurant and food service internship in Musanze, one interning in masonry and one in accounting also in Musanze, four in Gisenyi interning in electrical and mechanical work, and one at an entrepreneurship camp in Gitarama. We caught up with three who are remaining at Imbabazi for short interviews about the summer break:
Rose is sixteen years old and studies in Senior Two in the Rwaza secondary school in Musanze. After finishing school she hopes to continue studying in university and medical school and become a pediatrician to help children.
Are you happy to return home from school?
Yes, but I miss my friends.
Can you tell me what you do day to day on vacation?
I wake up, I mop in the room or clean the bathrooms and showers. I help wash dishes in the afternoon and help to peel potatoes. We eat corn or rice at lunch. After chores, we chat and play.
What do you like to do on break:
I like to play monopoly and mancala.
Do you like to be at school or on break more?
At school. Because I like studying.
Rukundo is also a student at the Rwaza secondary school in Musanze. He studies in Senior Six and will be graduating this November!
Do you like to be at school or at home more:
I like to be at school. Because at school there are more people to see and things to do.
Can you describe a typical day on break?:
On break, I like to wake at 5AM and find some water to drink. When I finish at 5:30AM I go to pray. I return at 7AM. I start to do normal chores: mop in the dining room or dormitories, clean the bathrooms and sweep up or cut grass. We finish at 9 or 10AM then sometimes I do laundry. When we finish work early I go to play soccer at 10 or 11. Then we come back and eat lunch and rest for an hour. In the afternoon sometimes I go use the computers in the computer room or play music in the music room. If I have time I’ll read a book or review from school.
Is it good to see your friends here on break?
Yes it is good. But it’s better to visit my friends from school on break!
What else do you want to say:
In general, I like to play soccer. I like to watch films. In particular action films: ones that are scary or have high technology. I like to pray. I pray on the Sabbath. But I’m not an Adventist; I’m in the Temperance movement. Also, sometimes I think of Madame Carr and what she did. Sometimes we help in the fields planting onions and cabbage, but we only help plant vegetables. Sometimes I go to visit my friends. I take a bus when they live far. I like to visit friends.
Hakizimana is a student in the Kanyundo Primary school next door to Imbabazi. He is a student in P5 and lives at Imbabazi year round.
Do you like to be at school or on break more? I like to be at school more. Because at school we learn a lot!
What do you like to do on break? I do work. I like to mop in the room or in the bathrooms. You like to mop? Yes very much! Also I like to play games with the visitors who come and to visit our neighbors outside of Imbabazi. I like to go walking in the mountains or in the caves nearby. We tried to walk to the volcanoes.
What else should we know: I use the computers, I like typing on the computers. I play football and I really like hiking in the mountains! I like studying and listening to the radio!