Meet Annie Uwase Rwanda’s first female driver guide

AnnieWith Rwanda’s First female drive tour guide Annie Uwase. Annie is a polyglot, speaks English, French, Kiswahili and Kinyurwanda fluently. She is just topping 23 years but is making history as the first lady tour guide that drives as well. She is just picking up her licence. Last year at Kwita Izina she was one of our guides and as usual we gave her hell. Nigerians, Ugandans, Somalians etc. She was so young but quite firm and well informed. We called her Kagame’s daughter. She gave you rules and rules and rules.

We all encouraged her. So I was surprised to be invited by a group of Tour guides for an outing. I joined the tour guides among whom was one of her mentors Sam. We drove round Kigali and I sampled Annie’s new skill. They hosted me to coffee and snacks at the Bourbon cafe. Annie is now not only an experienced guide but one that drives. With her small frame the vehicle looked too big but she did well. She will go places. Rwandan is known for many feats by its women. Annie has just joined the list of first. As usualatqnews.com will be doing a story on Annie in the coming weeks. Congrats Annie.

I’m called Uwase Anuarite(Annie)a first year university student majoring in tour and travel management,in university of tourism and business technology (UTB) the former RTUC.And working as a tour guide,born in Rwanda on july 2nd,1992 so soon i will be 23 years old.

I joined tourism industry in  2013.I started this career in Gisenyi western province of Rwanda while i was doing volunteer work in a centre that helps people living with different disabilities(mental and physical)UCC(Ubumwe Community Centre).

DSC_1439Later i met a tour guide Innocent Twagiramukiza who  brought some tourists to the centre. He motivated me to try joining the tourism industry.At first i hesitated because of fear. I was asking myself if realy i can spend the whole day talking in english or french and if I was ready to learn a lot things because i had to read a lot and learn different things even visit all atractions we have in Rwanda to become a guide. This was really hard for me as i had no idea about tourism because i did Mathetics,Economics and Computer in secondary school.But i also had the biggest challenge of how i’ll convice my parents .

Based on our culture girls especialy young as i was,are to stay home with their parents/guardians and not to do such tasking jobs of travelling and sometimes spending nights outside their homes.

But because of the fact that i was spending most of my time in centre working with people living with disabilities,i was motivated  seeing extra ordinary things these people would do such as sawing,making hand crafts etc..and therefore i took the initiative of also doing extra ordinary work where girls have ventured and do all i can to convice my family which wasn’t easy at all.That’s how i joined an association of local tour guides on Congo Nile Trail(kivu Trekking guides association).

From that day i started learning different things about tourism visiting some attractions,later joined Green hills eco-tours headed by Innocent Twagirumukiza who realy helped me alot.I am so grateful for everything he did for me in helping me to become a guide.

Before joining Green hills eco-tours i had a well established talent of mastering languages at school that’s to say fluency in english,french,swahili and Kinyarwanda which enabled me to mix well with tourists and was guided to acquire more skills like speaking skills etc and expertise in tourism industry as a freelancer and a member of RWASAGA(Rwanda Safari Guides Association).

But as i was only a guide not a driver guide i couldn’t work with all companies because most of companies here  use driver guides.Then i took a decision to learn driving and get a driving license.Now am thankful to God that i’ve got my driving licence and i can drive well and trying to do my best to do a lot of practice and hope this will change in future because i have a big dream of sucess in this industry.

Thank you so much

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