Elisabeth Kaneza was born in Rwanda on 4 August 1987.
She is a political scientist, holding a Bachelor’s degree in European Studies from the University of Maastricht, and a Master’s degree in Intercultural Conflict Management from the Alice-Salomon University of Applied Sciences Berlin. Elisabeth is experienced in working with governmental and non-governmental organisations. Her areas of work include international development cooperation, conflict management and migration.
Elisabeth Kaneza migrated together with her family to Germany at the age of seven due to the outbreak of the tragic Genocide in 1994. She grew up in the city of Aachen where she went to school and became very active in youth projects aimed at supporting children and young migrants. Following the ideal to encourage her peers to be self-confident and creative, Elisabeth started working as tutor, youth leader, dance coach in non-profit projects with the age of 15.
Kaneza is the Founder and Director of Kaneza.org and the Kaneza Initiative for Dialogue and Empowerment, an organisation created to promote intercultural understanding and individual empowerment. She is also the Co-founder and President of the German-Rwandan Youth Network Rwanda Connection which is active in developmental education and reconciliation.
She further consults organisations and businesses engaged in international relations and diversity management. Moreover, Elisabeth Kaneza promotes developmental education and diversity by working as speaker and presenter at different forums. She also accompanies the personal development of young people as mentor.
Kaneza was awarded by the “Robert Bosch Stiftung” for her exemplary contribution towards social change and is a member of the foundation’s Fellowship Program “Die Verantwortlichen” since 2015. She further holds the “German-African Citizen Award – DABA” (2014).
Elisabeth Kaneza is also a fellow of the “Deutschlandstiftung Integration” and Alumna of the Civil Academy.