Our partners from the parents’ association APEM have been talking to us for a long time about founding a vocational school for Ruli.

Vocational training had been neglected by the Rwandan state during the reconstruction of the educational system. But trained workers are urgently required. And studying is not the best solution for all young people.

We discussed together which professions should be trained and decided to start with works for house building. It has been important to everyone that in Rwanda women are also active in construction work.

After the charity run of Realschule Süd and Immanuel-Kant-Gymnasium in Bad Oeynhausen/Germany in 2010, we started to implement the project.

Strict state regulations had to be fulfilled. Rooms for theoretical lessons, practical opportunities, cooperation with companies, materials and above all qualified teachers were required.


It was not easy, it was more espensive than originally planned. But it worked.

The Technical Secondary School Ruli (ETR) opened.

At the beginning in 2013, girls and boys were trained as masons. They were instructed by good teachers, among them also a woman.


Later there were carpenters and joiners.

Thanks to a donation of the Pastoraler Raum WerreWeser welding courses are offered.

Electricians, plumbers and sanitary engineers are to follow in the next steps. Heating engineers are not required in Rwanda.

In January 2018 we could participate in the distribution of certificates for more than one hundred graduates of the ETR. The proud young men and women received their certificates in an impressive, but also very long celebration followed by an open day. Again and again they called their motto “Few words, more practices”. But not all successful students took part in the celebration. They worked in factories too far away from Ruli.

Our Project “Students help Students”

In 2018, the students in the wood construction branch manufactured school furniture for three classrooms of the elementary school Ruli – in high quality. The exemplary project was financed by our great donors, among others also by the pupils of the Realschule Hausberge through their participation in the Tagwerk campaign and by a donation from the “Minda cares” campaign organized by Minda Industrieanlagen GmbH in Minden.



At the beginning of 2019, ETR students built with the financial support from IKIRARO a new toilet for their own school, as the old one was destroyed during the rainy season.

There was a risk that the school would be closed if the toilets were not renovated soon!

Thanks to the renovation, the school could continue to operate.


The foundation is completed
The toilets are under construction
The masonry students are still working…..
On February 20, 2019 they furnished us the great news: the new toilets are ready!

Again as part of our “Students help Students” campaign, in 2019/2020 the vocational students helped to create a new toilet building for the elementary school. The building contains six partially tiled toilet cabines each with ceramic toilets for boys and girls, a urinal , a handicapped toilet and hand wash basins with running water – a big step forward in terms of hygiene. The wastewater is treated in a three-chamber system. A great performance by the vocational students, which provided them a lot of practical experience.

You will find the diary for the construction of the toilets for the Primary  School HERE


Current situation of the ETR (December 2020)

Unfortunately, the vocational school ETR was not allowed to reopen classes after its closure due to Corona, because a commission of the ministry noted too many infrastructural deficiencies – especially in the area of hygiene, e.g. there is no running water available.

Extensive investments would be necessary. But this also raises the question of whether a private, financially self-supporting vocational school still fits into the Rwandan school system. Even in the last few years, many families could not afford the required school fees in the long term. Especially since a state-run vocational school is to be built nearby, which will be considerably less expensive.

At present there are different discussion regarding this topic and we are waiting for further decisions – and will, of course, keep you updated.