Twenty four officers of Rwandan Correctional Services from around the country have been trained in national and international standards of detention so that they improve welfare of Rwandan detainees.
The 24 were trained for five days during a training workshop organized by the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) in close collaboration with the International Centre for Prison studies (ICPS), which is now merged with the Institute for Criminal Policy Research of Birbeck University based in London.
Prison officers were imparted with professional skills on how to identify detainees’ needs and face humanitarian challenges in detention, how to develop a new understanding, to plan for action and to make change happen.
The Commissioner General of Rwanda Correctional Services, CGP George Rwigamba said the knowledge and skills gained will certainly reflect the great impact in our prison management.
Head of ICRC Delegation, Pascal Cuttat reminded participants that the prisons or correctional centers are built to keep human beings and their management should be done in a creative manner.
“The ultimate goal is to make sure that a maximum number of RCS staff is trained for the better wellbeing of detainees,” Cuttat said.
It is the first training workshop in Rwandan but previously five officers attended the one in Geneva putting the total to 29 officers.
The commandant of the RCS Training School, who attended the course, expressed interest in adapting its elements to enhance existing courses or to use it as standalone module.
An ongoing pilot project aimed at improving detainee accessibility to primary health care in detention is taking place in Huye and Ngoma prisons.
Participants said that they are now able to identify and deal with daily challenges that have been a problem to contain.
ICRC has been working closely with the Rwanda Correctional Service to ensure wellbeing of detainees defined with regular monitoring, dialogue and the introduction of biogas, soap, chlorine and sauce pan production in prisons and various water, sanitation and hygiene-related initiatives.