The Kigali Genocide Memorial Centre was opened on the 10th Anniversary of the Rwandan Genocide, in April 2004. The Centre is built on a site where 250,000 people are buried. The Centre is a permanent memorial to those who fell victim to the genocide and serves as a place where people can grieve those that they have lost.
One of the principle reasons for the Centres existence is to provide an educational facility. Rwandans believe that it is extremely important for the younger generations of Rwandans who will not have lived through the genocide but whose lives will still be affected by it, to be able to have access to a place where they can learn about the reasons and affects of the genocide.
The Centre includes three permanent exhibitions, the largest of which documents the genocide in 1994. There is also a children’s memorial, and an exhibition on the history of genocidal violence around the world. The Education Centre, Memorial Gardens and National Documentation Centre of the Genocide all contribute to a meaningful tribute to those who perished, and form a powerful educational tool for the next generation. The exhibition at the Kigali Memorial Centre introduces several genocides and genocidal-type situations. It does not give examples of all genocidal massacres because of limited space. It can only illustrate a few examples, representing a tragic cross-section of a century of genocide.