Lisa Rogoff

Lisa Rogoff (Survivor Corps in Rwanda): Lisa has spent much of her professional career promoting human rights. She earned a BA from Colgate University. She then worked for the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum’s Committee on Conscience where she produced Voices on Genocide Prevention, a weekly podcast. Lisa then worked at the ENOUGH Project, directing campaigns to raise awareness about the crises in Sudan, Congo and Uganda. Lisa returned to academia to pursue a joint-degree at Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service and McDonough School of Business. While at Georgetown she worked at the Clinton Global Initiative, designing the Human Rights and Peace Track for the CGI’s second annual conference for university students. During her first year at graduate school, Lisa also worked with the Grassroots and Issues Management Team at APCO Worldwide, a global communications consulting firm. After her fellowship, Lisa wrote: "My experience in Rwanda has taught me the importance of flexibility. I’ve also seen the importance of empowering women...I don’t know that I’ve changed the way I look at myself, though I have come to understand just how fortunate I am to have been born in my circumstances. I have met so many wonderful and talented men and women in Rwanda who have been unable to realize their fullest potential because of their economic, social, or political situations.”

My bags are packed and I’m ready to go…

27 May

Rwanda is the land of a thousand hills. Or so I’m told.

I’ve also been told that the country is rapidly rising – economically and socially – through investment, technology, and an impressive work ethic.

I know I’m not allowed to bring plastic bags into Rwanda, nor can I get on a motorbike taxi without a helmet. If I want to go see the gorillas in Virunga National Park, I have to make reservations months in advance. Friends and colleagues have told me that Kigali is one of the safest cities in Africa and that it’s a relatively easy place to live.

I also know about Rwanda’s darker history; the genocide that began in April 1994 and that resulted in the massacre of almost one million Tutsi and moderate Hutus. I have read about the Arusha Accords and the plane crash of President Habyarimana that eventually incited the events of 1994 for which Rwanda is most well known. Over the last semester I have researched the current political situation in Rwanda and written about the political and social rise of women after the genocide.

Courtesy of the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum

Courtesy of the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum

I have done my homework and learned a great deal about what I will be doing in Rwanda as an Advocacy Peace Fellow working with Survivor Corps, an international organization, formerly known as the Landmine Survivors Network. I’m excited to meet Albert, my Survivor Corps colleague based in Kigali, and begin working on a survey project and documentary about Survivor Corps peer support program.


All in all, I consider myself well informed about Rwanda’s history, political and economic situation, its potential for growth, and the organization I’ll be working with this summer. Yet, as I pack my bags, make housing arrangements, pick up my malaria prescription, and begin saying goodbye to friends, I have no idea what to expect when I arrive in Kigali on June 2nd…

Posted By Lisa Rogoff

Posted May 27th, 2009

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