Prior to the civil war and the 1994 genocide, Rwanda had
a range of social services that were broadly in line with
the average level of sub-Saharan African countries. To see
related acronyms about this country, please check
AbbreviationFinder to see the definitions of RWA and acronym for
Rwanda. A large
part of health care was provided by foreign missionary
communities. The war caused the worst refugee disaster in
modern times, social services were paralyzed and most of the
NGOs left the country. One of the major social problems in
the late 1990s was the large number of orphans with war
Of the young children, 18% were underweight in 2005. At
half of the births, qualified staff are available. Maternal
mortality was estimated in 2008 at 540 per 100,000
descendants. In 2009, 17 per cent of government expenditure
went to health care. There are 16 hospital beds per 10,000
residents (2007) and two doctors per 100,000 residents
(2005). Rwanda is severely affected by the HIV/AIDS
epidemic and although the proportion of infected persons has
fallen since the 1990s, 3 percent of the population aged
15-49 are estimated to carry the virus (2009). Other common
causes of death are lung and diarrhea and tuberculosis.
Poverty is still widespread; four out of five Rwandans
live on less than $ 2 a day. Almost 2/3 of the population
has access to clean water.
The Constitution prohibits gender discrimination and
after 1994 women have come to play a more important role in
society. In parliament, women are in the majority with 56
percent of the mandate. As many girls as boys go to school.
However, violence against women, especially in the home, is
still a major problem.
Contrary to the situation in many other African
countries, the Rwanda trade unions made no major progress
after independence, and the period has been characterized by
stagnation. During the 1990s, trade union activity was
largely down due to the political situation.
Kigali, the capital of Rwanda in Central Africa; 1.13 million residents
(2012). The city is in the middle of the country on several highs for approximately
1500 m height. It is home to the country's administration and industry and is a
lively trading town. The city has a Muslim neighborhood. Rapid urban growth has
resulted in large slums.
The city was founded in 1908 as the administrative and military center of the
German colonial power. Under the Belgian rule of 1916-62, Kigali lost its
political significance but served as a trading town. At Rwanda's independence in
1962, the city was designated as the capital with only 6,000 houses, and a rapid
development began. The city has been marked by the genocide in 1994, when Hutu
extremists murdered thousands of Tutsis. The rebuilding after the riots was only
slow, but the majority of the population has returned.