Success Story: Meet Immaculee

Immaculee at Rz Manna Bakery

Immaculee at Rz Manna Bakery

Immaculee lives in Kigali and works at an upscale bakery and café called RZ Manna. In 2007, Immaculee graduated high school, but could not find a job. She continued to live with her family and spent her time helping her family with domestic chores. She had the goal of one day supporting herself, but did not know how to apply for jobs in the formal sector.

In 2012 she enrolled in Akazi Kanoze and received three months of technical training in catering and food preparation in addition to the work readiness curriculum. Immaculee says that the process of learning how to apply for jobs, creating a CV and practicing interview techniques gave her enough confidence to go out and apply for jobs after graduating in February 2013. Before, she didn’t know that it was acceptable to take your CV to an employer, but after Akazi Kanoze she knew where to look for jobs and how to put together a competitive application. Her application to RZ Manna was her third application to a job. She submitted her Akazi Kanoze certificate along with her application to show that she had received training in communication skills and catering. Immaculee had an in person interview and completed a practical test to prove her food preparation skills. There are now two Akazi Kanoze graduates who work at RZ Manna. 

According to Immaculee, apart from her technical training, the most important things that she learned during Akazi Kanoze were interpersonal communication skills and entrepreneurship-related skills. Although she is no longer self-employed, Immaculee started a small business selling goods in the market in order to support herself after graduation. 

Immaculee says that the lessons she learned during Akazi Kanoze are skills that youth need to succeed in society, but which are not taught in schools. With her new skills and knowledge, Immaculee explains that she feels more hopeful and confident about her future. Before, she only sat at home and wondered how she was going to support herself, but now she has acquired the agency to go out and take the necessary steps to achieve her dreams.