I recently learned of Umuganda, long-standing tradition in Rwanda. On the last Saturday of every month, all people 18 years of age and older are required to participate in five hours of unpaid community service. Many people maintain the roads, others beautify public property and some organize community projects. All people work together; politicians and farmers, lawyers and store clerks.
As I asked people about the mandatory service, I was surprised to hear the comments. People did not feel the service is a burden or that the government is taking advantage of their labor. On the contrary, they feel it is an opportunity to work closely with their community and improve life in Rwanda.