Families around the world appreciate and enjoy sharing stories with their children with characters, settings and values that represent their culture and beliefs. They do this by telling stories or reading books or showing cartoons and films to their children.
Rwandan families are no different, however the content available to them is limited. Most of the children in Rwanda that have access to children’s programming on television and in the cinema will only ever watch foreign content.
Yambi Animation Studios was founded in June 2014 to meet this gap in the market. We create animated cartoons and films specifically targeting Rwandan children but which children throughout the continent and the world can enjoy. We can create content that is not only entertaining but also educational.
Akaliza studied Multimedia Technology & Design at university and arrived in Kigali a few months after graduating. Soon she was completely swept up by the entrepreneurial spirit and fierce patriotism that exists here. After working as a private website consultant for 2 years, she registered a company, Shaking Sun Ltd. which she has run for over 2 years. She is also a mentor at kLab – an open technology hub in Kigali. She is also a member of Girls in ICT Rwanda – a group of female ICT entrepreneurs and professionals encouraging teenage girls in Rwanda to understand the value of developing ICT skills. In 2014 she was inducted into the Microsoft 4Afrika Advisory Council.
Background in Animation
Akaliza worked as an animator for two episodes of The African Tales cartoon series – “The Elephant’s Leaves” (Figure 2) and “Ngenzi the African Wolf”. This was the first cartoon series ever produced in Rwanda. It was created as is part of the Know Zone, a project that supports literacy, numeracy and life-skills learning through a combination of drama, storytelling, animation and studio-based programs, backed up with interactive support materials.
As the managing director of Shaking Sun Ltd., Akaliza secured contracts with over 30 local and international clients for website development and hosting services.