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Mediation Approaches and Best Practices in Rwanda

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I.    Background

Prison Fellowship Rwanda (PFR) is a non-profit organization that works in partnership with the government of Rwanda and its relevant agencies, local and international organisations as well as UN agencies to foster interventions that support psycho-social healing, peace building and reconciliation, restorative justice, crime prevention, human rights promotion and legal aid, intervening in emergencies as well as nurturing socio-economic empowerment in Rwanda in the wake of the 1994 genocide against Tutsi and its aftermath. Prison Fellowship Rwanda was founded on 01/07/1995, affiliated to the Prison Fellowship International in 1997. It was officially registered and recognized by the ministerial order no 037/17, of 23/10/2002, by the Ministry of Justice as a non- profit organization, published in the official gazette of the Republic of Rwanda in 2002. For more information about Prison Fellowship Rwanda, please visit

Interpeace is an international organization for peacebuilding, headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland. Its aim is to strengthen the capacities of societies to manage conflict in non-violent, non-coercive ways by assisting national actors in their efforts to develop social and political cohesion. Interpeace also strives to assist the international community (and in particular the UN) to play a more effective role in supporting peacebuilding efforts around the world through better understanding and response to the challenges of creating local capacities that enhance social and political cohesion. For more information about Interpeace, please visit

In Line with its mission, Interpeace in close collaboration with Prison Fellowship Rwanda secured funding from the European Union through the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) to implement a project on insider mediation. The overall goal of the project is to strengthen mediation capacity in the Great Lakes Region. The project falls under the wider Program of Action/ Global Program on Peace and Security of the International Conference of the Great Lakes Region (ICGLR).  The project started in October 2020 and is being implemented in two pilot countries, namely the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) with a focus on the province of North Kivu and Rwanda.  The implementation is done in partnership with relevant regional and national institutions/organisations. At the regional level, key actors are the ICGLR’s Peace and security Directorate. In DRC, primary project partners are the Mécanisme National de Suivi de l’Accord Cadre d’Addis Abeba (MNS), Pole Institute and the Commission d’Intégrité et de Médiation Electorale (CIME). In Rwanda, key partners are the National Unity and Reconciliation Commission (NURC) and Prison Fellowship Rwanda (PFR).

For Rwanda, the project is linked to ‘’Reinforcing Community Capacity for Social Cohesion and Reconciliation through Societal Trauma Healing in Bugesera District’’ programme funded by the EU and co-implemented by Interpeace and Prison Fellowship Rwanda. This is an innovative programme that simultaneously contributes to strengthening mental health systems and supports trauma healing and collective livelihoods.

The project targets are “insider mediators”. These are key leaders in their communities and personalities with the capacity to influence social processes. They derive their legitimacy from their proximity to conflicts and are effective brokers of peace by virtue of being perceived as fair and trustworthy by the conflicting parties. The project is committed to use a gender responsive and trauma sensitive mediation approach and strategy to respond to the needs and realities of the people of region.  

In March 2021, the project team in DRC and Rwanda conducted a mapping of mediation actors, assessed their capacity, and documented their approaches as well as their needs. Workshops to present the mapping findings were held on March 31, 2021 in Goma (North Kivu) and Kigali. During the Kigali workshop, participants came up with an idea to develop a “booklet that deepens the analysis of existing mediation approaches in Rwanda with a particular emphasis on the best practices”.

Currently Prison Fellowship Rwanda and Interpeace are looking for a qualified and highly motivated candidate of high moral character and professional integrity who will develop this booklet. His/her services will be required for at least 33 working days starting from May 2021. 

II.    Objectives of the study

The overall objective of the consultancy is to document the most successful conflict mediation experiences, approaches, and practices at the community level in Rwanda. This leading objective can be further broken down into the following specific objectives:

1)    Know and understand the variety of community-level mediation processes and practices as well as their potentials to lead to satisfactory outcomes for parties to conflicts.
2)    Document lessons from specific mediation experiences so that they can be   shared with the community of practice in Rwanda and beyond.
3)    Inform mediation tools and manuals, including mediation plans and training materials.
4)    Develop evidence-based and harmonized mediation guidelines for reference by aspiring insider mediators as well as contribute towards the establishment of a national community of practice.

III.    Scope

The study will cover government mechanisms, civil society and community-based mediation initiatives. The focus will be put on decentralized government mechanisms, civil society and community-based initiatives of mediation.  Only ongoing mediation practices/mechanism/initiatives will be considered.

IV.    Deliverables

In line with the objectives above, the consultant is expected to deliver on the following:

1)    A technical proposal highlighting the understanding of these Terms of Reference.
2)    An inception report detailing the steps to be undertaken for the completion of this study, including the methodology to be used, data collection tools, and the timeline.
3)    A draft booklet that highlights clearly the most successful mediation experiences, successful approaches, and practices of mediation- with concrete examples
4)    A final booklet that integrates inputs from the project partners and other stakeholders that is appropriately designed.
5)    Mediation guidelines informed by the study findings, as an integral part of the booklet:

V.    Proposed methodology

 The process to collect information will be consultative in nature. The consultant is expected to engage as many relevant actors as possible at central and decentralised levels. Prison Fellowship Rwanda and Interpeace will set up a Technical Working Group (TWG) that will provide technical support and guidance to the consultant on regular basis. The TWG is responsible for quality assurance. It will consist of Prison Fellowship Rwanda and Interpeace project team, 2 representatives of the justice sector and 2 representatives of civil society organisations providing mediation services. The TWG can be extended to individual subject-matter experts.  In addition to the TWG, the proposed sequenced approach (inception report, data collection, data analysis, and drafting) will further improve the quality through punctual presentations of progress to Prison Fellowship Rwanda, Interpeace and partners. The consultant will select the most expressive mediation success stories with the aim to ease their dissemination among mediation community of practice.

VI.    Study timeline

The completion of the study will cover a total of 33 working days starting from May 2021.  The consultant will propose a detailed work plan during the inception phase. The table below proposes time allocation from the perspective of the client. 


Core activity

# of days


Understanding of the terms of reference & contract



Inception Report (IR)



Consultations with key actors



Booklet drafting



Presentation of the drafts (including the IR) and incorporation of stakeholders’ inputs



Presentation to the project Steering Committee & incorporation of feedback



Final booklet touch (including proper design)


VII.    Essential skills and qualifications

  • PHD in a related discipline (e.g. sociology, anthropology, psychology, peace studies/conflict management, international relations, law, political science)
  • At least 5 years of professional experience and / or civic engagement in related fields (e.g. dialogue facilitation, mediation, conflicts management, restorative justice, reconciliation, human rights advocacy, transitional justice initiatives), of which at least 5 years must have been within the context of Rwanda.
  • Experience in collaborating with government institutions, mandated commissions, National or international organizations and other Local actors.
  • Must be fluent in English and Kinyarwanda.

VIII.    How to apply

To apply, please send the following by e-mail to attaching the following:

  • CV (maximum 3 pages);
  • Motivation letter (maximum 1 page) outlining your skills and experience relevant to the Terms of Reference and your specific interest in the specific assignment for which you are applying.
  • Description of the methodology/approach you will use to deliver on the assignment you are applying for (maximum 2 pages).
  • A Financial proposal (Please simply indicate your Daily Fee).
  • Three examples of previous relevant work.
  • Please include ‘’ MEDIATION APPROACHES AND BEST PRACTICES IN RWANDA’’ in the subject line of the application e-mail.

Due to the large number of applications, Prison fellowship Rwanda will only be able to respond to short-listed candidates. The application deadline is the 14th of May 2021. The application can be addressed to the Executive Director of Prison Fellowship Rwanda.

For more information about Prison Fellowship Rwanda, consult:


Done at Kigali on 20th April 2021.


Bishop Deogratias GASHAGAZA

Executive Director

Prison Fellowship Rwanda