Rwanda Threshold Program

  • Grant Total: $24,730,000
  • Signed: September 24, 2008
  • Completed: December 31, 2011

The three-year MCC program supportedthe Rwandan government’s efforts to strengthen civic participation, promote civil liberties and rights and improve the judicial system. The program provided training, technical support and grants to local and national civil society organizations and expanded citizen engagement by supporting independent community radio stations. The program reinforced Rwanda’s efforts to strengthen the judiciary and enact legislative reforms to strengthen civil liberties, human rights and civic participation. Finally, the program boosted training and technical assistance to journalists and the Rwandan National Police in an effort to further transparency and professionalism.

Promote Civil Rights and Liberties
  • Supported the professionalism of journalists and the media
  • Provided training to enable journalists to produce high-quality stories characterized by fairness and accuracy.
  • Provided training to publishers and media owners so that they understand the importance of their role in promoting an independent, professional media in Rwanda.
  • Provided technical assistance to the Association of Rwandan Journalists and the Press House, increasing their capacity and sustainability as independent civil society organizations.
  • Supported media associations so they could provide individual journalists with access to information technology equipment, small travel grants, and technical guidance; provided training to journalists; advocated for the interests of the media; and educated the public about the role of the media and journalists in a democratic society.
  • Supported the Inspectorate Service of the police to effectively monitor police performance
  • Provided training to Inspectorate officers in investigation techniques and the proper handling and treatment of fellow officers suspected of unethical conduct.
  • Provided technical assistance to the Inspectorate to formulate investigative procedures, internal policies, and avenues for citizen participation in the disciplinary processes.
  • Provided technical support to the Inspectorate to improve the process for making, receiving, tracking, investigating, analyzing and concluding complaints and commendations regarding police conduct.
  • Train trainers on the role of the Inspectorate.
  • Provided training and technical support to the Inspectorate to develop their public relations capacity to (a) publicize information about the police and the professional and ethical standards the police are required to abide by and to (b) liaise more effectively with the media and civil society on the results of Inspectorate investigations.
  • Provided technical assistance and, where appropriate, training to the Office of the Commissioner General of the Rwandan National Police to build capacity to identify and correct problems in police performance.
Strengthen Civic Participation

Build the capacity of civil society organizations

  • Provided training and technical assistance to national and local civil society organizations to ensure their independence and sustainability, as well as to engage more effectively with government, media, private sector, and the public.
  • Provided small grants to national and local civil society organizations for activities focused on capacity building, civil liberties, political rights, and voice and accountability.
  • Established community radio stations in rural areas to enhance citizen engagement and empowerment.

Strengthen the capacity of local officials for public participation

  • Provided training and technical assistance to local officials in public participation methods and public engagement, including the code of conduct for civil servants.
  • Supported the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning to translate the budget into Kinyarwanda; developed pamphlets summarizing the budget for distribution in all districts to the general public, civil society organizations, and donors; and carried out workshops and other sensitization activities to ensure that citizens and civil society actors understood the budget process and the role they played in it.
  • Supported the roll-out of a citizen report card and community score card system in several pilot districts to improve public institution transparency and accountability and strengthen civic participation in development planning and policy; trained and provided technical assistance to councilors and civil society actors to jointly manage and implement the report and score card system.

Develop and disseminate a code of conduct for civil servants

  • Provided support for the development of a code of conduct for civil servants involving multiple civil society actors and a series of public discussions.
  • Conducted a training-of-trainers to enable civil servants to act as instructors in government ministries and local governments.
  • Supported training, particularly in ministries that engaged significantly with the public, focused on the content of the code as well as on compliance with the code.
  • Provided support to the Ministry of Public Service to plan and execute a sensitization program for the general public on the content of the code.
Strengthen the Judicial Sector

Training and technical assistance to the judiciary

  • Assisted the Institute of Legal Practice and Development to develop its post-graduate curriculum for judicial staff.
  • Assisted the Institute of Legal Practice and Development to develop continuing education modules for legal practitioners, including lawyers, judges, and court officials, to increase their confidence, skills, and knowledge.
  • Supported judicial exchanges to increase knowledge and understanding of the functioning of judiciaries in other countries.
  • Provided on-the-job training and technical assistance for judicial staff to supplement and enhance knowledge and skills gained in the classroom.

Facilitate the rapid implementation of the legislative reform agenda

  • Supported Rwanda’s new Law Reform Commission to conduct specific policy analysis and research, build the capacity of its members to review existing and planned legislation, and make recommendations for continued legal reform and judicial independence.
  • Provided technical assistance and training to the Ministry of Justice’s Legislative Drafting Unit to increase the staff’s legal drafting and research skills and enable it to act on recommendations from the Law Reform Commission in order to further the government of Rwanda’s legal reform agenda.
  • Provided resources to libraries of a legislative drafting unit providing information technology equipment and resources