Rwanda’s High Commissioner to the UK, Johnston Busingye last week visited the UK National Holocaust Centre – birthplace of the Aegis Trust, which collaborated with Rwandan authorities to establish the Kigali Genocide Memorial, the final resting-place for 250,000 victims of the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi, in 2004. Aegis Trust continues to run the Memorial to date on behalf of the Ministry of National Unity and Civic Engagement.

Apart from meeting the Aegis Trust founder and CEO Dr James Smith at Aegis Trust UK headquarters in Nottingham, the High Commissioner also toured distribution facilities and retail stores for the White Rose recycled fashion chain in Hockley and Nottingham’s Old Market Square. Helping to counter the climate impact of the fashion industry, White Rose is a growing social enterprise which supports the peacebuilding work of Aegis Trust in Rwanda, the Central African Republic and beyond.

Busingye met White Rose founder Grace Walker, as well as Greg Campher, Director at Kigali Coffee and Nottingham’s Outpost Coffee roastery, where they toured the facility. Both companies are working with White Rose on a new speciality coffee enterprise supporting the Aegis Trust called ‘Good Human Coffee’, which improves quality and increases income for coffee farmers in Rwanda. They sampled some of the speciality ‘Good Human Coffee’, sourced from Muyumbu Washing Station in Rwanda’s Eastern Province.

The High Commissioner was also hosted by the leadership of Nottingham Trent University (NTU) and especially toured the Law School.  White Rose was in fact launched by NTU graduates in 2009 following a visit they made to the Kigali Genocide Memorial.

“This is an incredible operation,” HC Johnston Busingye told Dr James Smith and his colleagues in Nottingham. “Supporting sustainable livelihoods and responding to climate change, you’re creating a family and it’s growing. This is a global vision which is serving a great cause in Rwanda and building peace internationally. A hundred years from now, it will still be growing.”

“It’s been a real privilege to introduce His Excellency Johnston Busingye to the birthplace of the Aegis Trust, and to the development of White Rose and Good Human Coffee,” says Dr James Smith. “Developed at the Kigali Genocide Memorial Peace and Values Education has global relevance.  We look forward to helping peace education become Rwanda’s most valuable export.”