Vision Zero Youth Council Rwanda was represented in great African forum
Africa regional Forum for Action-Inclusive and Active mobility in a changing climate held in Kigali from 7th to 9th of June 2022, Vision Zero youth Council Rwanda was among other NGOs from Africa and Internationals invited in this great forum, our President Nkumbuye Ami represented us during 3 days of Forum.
Early morning on Tuesday is when 3 days of forum kicked off and opening remark was given by Mayor of Kigali city where he welcomed all participants in a green country of thousands hills (Rwanda) as he also mentioned the progress of Rwanda especially Kigali City to promote walking and Cycling, he gave example of car free day. Car Free Day takes place on every first and third Sunday of the month, where some roads are closed for motorized vehicles to be used only for walking and cycling.It is also a way to contribute, to some extent, to the reduction of gas emission as well as an opportunity to have a great cheer and socialization for City residents.
Day 1 generally was marked by showing the participants the situation of walking and cycling in Africa through experience of different NGOs and views of decision makers in their respective cities to promote walking and cycling. Panelists of the day didn’t forget to talk about road crashes as the greatest killer of young people aged between 15-29 years as they focused on the most vulnerable road users and the need to transform the streets to make them safe and healthy for children, youth and climate as well.
Nkumbuye Ami (Left) with other delegates
Day 2 of the forum started with panel discussion on the challenges and opportunities for active mobility financing and investment as well as sharing findings from UNEP and walk21 report “ Global outlook on financing for walking and cycling” where most of panelists mention that there are more funding in road safety but there is any issue to incorporate infrastructure with other project report related to road safety. There still needs to be improve in walking and cycling. Specifically in Africa we found out that we still have the challenges that many countries do not fund small projects related to walking and cycling.
What we have to do as NGOs is to make projects that can support the local community as well as keep advocating to decision makers for them to promote walking and cycling. Audiences also were reminded to not rely on the government, only they should also take the lead in working with different private sectors.
Enhancing the mobility of disabled people was learned by audience: 15% of the world population experience some from disability while 80% live in low and middle income countries
Site visit at Car free zone as an area that promotes walking in Kigali city and other team visited trail bridge and the aim of both visits were to showcase how urban and peri-urban space can look when the needs of people who walk and cycle are prioritized.
The last day of this great forum was focused on how to build Africaregion, convening champions and how can we create an action plan for Africa that will make life better for people who walk and cycle in the next 5 years.
Many participants appreciate how the organisers choose Rwanda to host this forum, as a country that has political will to promote road safety, walking and cycling. Apart from the host country, we also appreciate how every sector was represented: NGOs, Private sectors, Decision makers and researchers from different institutions globally.
For every reader of this article let us not forget this fact: “More than a billion people walk or cycle for more than 55 minutes every day in Africa - to reach work, home, school and other essential services. But Sub-Saharan Africa still has the highest per capita rate of road fatalities than any region in the world.” Will you join and work with us to promote road safety in Africa and achieve the target of decade of action by 2030?
MORE PICTURES OF THE EVENT
VISIT TRAIL BRIDGE
WRITTEN BY NKUMBUYE AMI
EDITOR KWIZERA JEAN RENE