About Me: I am a big advocate of avoiding the danger of a single story. The danger that is created when we tell the same story about a person or a place over and over in the same framework – this retelling of the story in the same framework creates a single story and often the only story we come to know. It creates the one image we have of a person or a place and becomes the image we base all assumptions and opinions from. This is no more true than the image of brutality we have come to know of Rwanda – crafted out of the re-telling of the genocide and not much more than the genocide by media, journalists, Hollywood and human rights experts. However, when I arrived in Rwanda, December 2008, I was disappointed - not because it was not what I imagined, I was more than happy that the safe, calm ease of life I was exposed to in Rwanda dispelled that imagine of brutality that I had - but I was disappointed because the image, the single story of Rwanda, that had been created was a complete and utter illusion and an illusion people continue to believe. It continues to disturb me that every time I speak of Rwanda, people make ill-formed statements of Rwanda still being exactly as it was in 1994. Since this experience I have been dedicated to encouraging others to create and voice their own stories to ensure their world and what we know of it is not defined by a single story.
My Areas of Expertise: Conflict Prevention, Mass Atrocity Prevention, Post-Genocide Reconstruction, Volunteerism