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Rwanda. Women in Charge

Work, pray, love: How women are reshaping country decades after genocide

Rwandan women had long been victims of oppression and sexual discrimination. This changed in the wake of the genocide that shook Rwanda in 1994. Up to 1 million people died in that hundred days of slaughter. The women who made up the majority of the surviving population have been at the vanguard of rebuilding the devastated country.

Post-genocide Rwanda has made major progress in promoting women’s rights and has even had a female-majority parliament since 2008. Women now routinely take on men’s jobs, as well as positions of leadership. They have also gained the right to inherit from their parents. Marital assets are now legally considered joint property.

This trend towards female empowerment hasn’t reached all women, however. Many, especially those who are poor and uneducated, still have a difficult time proving their worth and challenging cultural expectations. They often find it difficult to find jobs and still fear domestic violence.

An RTD crew went to Rwanda to find out how women view their role in post-genocide society and hear about the problems they still face. We ask if gender equality has truly been achieved there or whether it's still a work in progress.