Once upon a time, I traveled to France, Suriname, and Cameroon. I became hooked on traveler’s high and am off to my next adventure in Rwanda. As a postgraduate, my gap year assignment is to teach English at INATEK university in Kibungo through a Fulbright scholarship. These are my cultural misunderstandings, meanderings, and general contemplations about this small country of a thousand hills.

If you care to contact me, here are a few useful resources:

Rwandan Cell #: +2500787182869 (only international calls)

Email: katie.kirsch90@gmail.com

Skype: katie.kirsch1

For Mail Under 2 lbs:

Katie Kirsch
C/O Deputy Public Affairs Officer
2210 Kigali Place
Dulles, VA   20189-2210

For Larger Care Packages*:

Katherine Kirsch

c/o English Learning Center, Institute of Agriculture, Technology and Education of Kibungo

P.O. Box 06

Kibungo; Ngoma District


*HOW TO SEND STUFF (as stolen from Rwanda PCV, africanwannabe):

  1. PACK IT: If it can fit in a padded envelope, use it. I’ll get it sooner and it’s less likely to be inspected/taxed. If you’re using a box, USPS standard/prepaid boxes are best and cheapest. FedEx, UPS, DHL are very pricey and Express Mail is never express.
  2. TAPE IT: To quote a current PCV in Kenya, use as much tape as you think you would need if you were planning to drop-kick it into a pile of land mines. Now double that.
  3. ADDRESS IT: Red ink is official, so if you have a red marker/pen on hand, use it! Make sure you print clearly. Write “AIR MAIL” or “PAR AVION” on the package to help speed up the process.
  4. PROTECT IT: God is good. Draw crosses, write Bible verses or messages such as “Jesus is watching” and “Jesus loves you” all over the package/tape. To discourage sticking fingers during inspection by postal workers, anything religious will help.
  5. DECLARE IT: Use your best judgement, keep it short and sweet. Do not write thing such as “CANDY”, “DVDs”, “CHOCOLATE” or “CLOTHES” on the customs slip, as this will almost guarantee my package will be “inspected”. If you feel comfortable telling a white lie, write things such as “RELIGIOUS MATERIALS”, “BIBLES” or “TEACHING MATERIALS”. If this makes you uncomfortable, preface items with the word “used” as much as possible…”USED BOOKS”, “USED CLOTHES”, etc. I’ve been told that “WOMEN’S HYGIENE” works, too. Declare the value of the package as $10 or less, possibly even $0.

2 Responses to “Who is this?”

  1. Mary H Says:

    Amazing insights. My daughter is in Uganda for 4 months from Taylor University. She has learned so much and has posted similiar thoughts? I forwarded this to her. Thank you!

  2. TWAGIRAYEZU Alphonse Says:


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