“University was a far-fetched dream for me. I come from a poor family and have been through the struggle of not having access to basic needs like food and a good education. Here I am now, self-employed and creating opportunities for my peers; all this, through Kepler.”
Samuel Nsabimana’s story is one that harnesses the vision of Kepler perfectly. Coming from a humble background and struggling to put together the pieces of his future, Samuel’s trajectory shifted when he joined the Kepler community. Pursuing a Bachelor of Arts in Communication with a concentration in Business, Samuel knew that this would be a stepping stone to the beginning of a successful career.
Located in the Western Province of Rwanda, the Kiziba Refugee Camp is one of the country’s oldest refugee camps, home to over 10,000 refugees. When Kepler planted its feet in Kiziba, our aim was to ensure that education ceased to be seen as a privilege but rather a resource that is a necessity for all.
“Frankly, I never anticipated being accepted into an institution like Kepler. Prior to being admitted, I had lost all hope in pursuing a higher education after my secondary studies, let alone running my own business. Things took a turn for the best and I was accepted into Kepler in 2019,” shared Samuel.
Kepler has made a commitment to ensuring that at least 25% of our student body are refugee learners, by addressing the disparity present in accessibility to a higher education. Our Kiziba campus was one of the first programs to provide access to fully accredited university degrees in a remote camp setting. With this foundation, our goal is to ensure that all our refugee students have a strong foundation that enables them to create opportunities for themselves and their communities, similar to Samuel.
“Before I founded ‘Itara Media’, I took some time to reflect on how inaccessibility to certain services and resources hindered the advancement of my community. You often find people spending 5,000 Rwf to travel over 20 kilometers, to get a service that would cost them less than 500 Rwf. With this in mind, I wanted to inspire young refugees to explore their creativity and help them change their living standard,” added Samuel.
Itara Media provides technological services to the Kiziba and host community through services such as printing and photocopying, photography, graphic design, branding, and more. Currently, Itara Media has two full-time employees and hires part-time staff, on a need basis.
“Kepler adequately prepared me and continues to support me through my journey. They have taught me the importance of learning how to learn. This mindset makes me a better businessman because I am not afraid to ask questions or even seek advice. All this has come together and built my confidence and enabled me to be a leader, a problem solver and an innovator.”
To learn more about Kepler, visit www.kepler.org.