Kwita Izina Gorilla Naming Ceremony Contest Rocks Facebook


order geneva; font-size: small; line-height: 150%;”>EAC residents have since been invited to “Name a Gorilla” and win a trip for two to Rwanda.

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order geneva;”>The Rwanda Development Board (RDB) which is hosting the 10th Annual Kwita Izina Gorilla Naming Ceremony on July 1, 2014, in Kinigi, Rwanda, said a week of festivities will precede the world-renowned event.

“Participants are invited to propose a name for one of the 18 baby gorillas born this year with a chance of winning a trip for two to Rwanda if their name is selected,” said Linda Mutesi, Public Relation and Communication Division Manager.

Kwita Izina (which means “gorilla name” in the local Kinyarwanda language) is based on a centuries old Rwandan baby naming tradition.

Mutesi said the celebration is designed to bring international attention to the endangered gorillas of the Virunga Mountains. Over the course of the past 9 ceremonies, 161 baby gorillas have been named.

The theme for this year’s milestone celebration is “A Decade: Conserving – Empowering – Growing”, highlighting the collaborative community approach to conservation that has led to 26.3% increase in the gorilla population since Kwita Izina debuted ten years ago.

“The Kwita Izina 2014 theme reminds us of the indelible link between humans and gorillas. Every name given to a gorilla is part of our promise to provide them with freedom and safety in the wild. The “Name a Gorilla” contest is a way to extend this relationship to our neighbors in East Africa and invite them to be part of Rwanda’s legacy of conservation,” says Ambassador Yamina Karitanyi, Head of RDB’s Tourism and Conservation Department.

“Name a Gorilla” details and the form to propose a baby gorilla name can be found on the Travel Rwanda Facebook Page or at this link:

Co-sponsoring the contest alongside RDB are two international conservation organizations – the African Wildlife Foundation and The Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund – as well as Rwanda’s national airline, Rwandair. The winner will be revealed July 1st at Kwita Izina.

Mutesi said the Kwita Izina website detailing the weeklong festivities is Twitter hashtag is #Kwitaizina.

The 2013 Kwita Izina Ceremony won second prize in the UNWTO Ulysses Award for Innovation in Public Policy and Governance.

The RDB recognizes enhanced national conservation practices and community ownership of projects around the Volcanoes National Park that have seen beneficiaries empowered and their lives improved.

Rwanda’s tourism sector, including gorilla visitors, has grown remarkably. In 2013, Rwanda hosted 1,137,000 visitors and generated $294 million in economic impact.


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