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About us

The Founder

The Singer, Organist and Composer, Kizito MIHIGO was born on Saturday, July 25, 1981 in Kibeho, the sector of Nyaruguru District, in the former province of Gikongoro, currently located in the Southern Province. Son of Augustin BUGUZI and Placidia ILIBAGIZA, Kizito MIHIGO grew up in a Catholic Christian educational environment. At 9 years old, he began composing small songs, and five years later, while he was a student in high school at the Petit Séminaire de Butare, he became the most popular liturgical organist composer of the Catholic Church of Rwanda. In April 1994, when he was almost 13 years old, the young MIHIGO survived the genocide against the Tutsis, in which more than eight hundred thousand Tutsis were murdered including his own father.

A few years later, this tragedy inspired the young talent to become an organist-singer-author and composer of the most popular liturgical songs in Rwanda. A year after the genocide, Kizito Mihigo composed hundreds of liturgical works that quickly resonated throughout many several parishes in Rwanda.

In 2000, (when he was 19 years old), Kizito MIHIGO had already authored more than 200 (two hundred) liturgical compositions sung in all the parishes of Rwanda.

In 2003, noticed by the country's authorities, he received a Scholarship to study music in Europe.

In 2003, at the time of his stay in Belgium, at the Church of Saint Joseph de Glimes in the municipality of Incourt, he met a Franco-Belgian Christian couple of extraordinary Faith. Pierre DESMARTHON and Ghislaine SQUOQUART, who became close friends.

In 2008, he obtained a postgraduate degree (DFE) at the Conservatoire de Musique of Paris.

IIn 2008, 5 years after their meeting, the couple adopted him as their own son. His adoption by Pierre DESMARTHON and Ghislaine SQUOQUART will be pronounced by the court of Nivelles a year later.

From 2008 to 2010, after graduation, he was a music teacher in Belgium.

In 2010, he founded the KMP (Kizito Mihigo for Peace a non-profit foundation whose objective is to use Art for Peace, Reconciliation, Unity in Rwanda after the genocide against the Tutsis in 1994. His best-known works are:

  • INUMA (DOVE): Kinyarwanda Song about Peace made - in 2010
  • TWANZE GUTOBERWA AMATEKA (composed on the occasion of the 17th commemoration of Genocide against the Tutsi)
  • TURI ABANA B'U RWANDA: (Composed in 2011. This song became an anthem-like among the Rwandan Diaspora)
  • ITEME (BRIDGE): (A 20 minutes Christian song about forgiveness and reconciliation)
  • ARC EN CIEL (RAINBOW): (Singing on forgiveness and peace after the genocide)
  • URUGAMBA RWO KWIBOHORA: (Composed for the National Liberation Day)
  • IJORO RIBARA UWARIRAYE: (Song about Memory Conservation, composed on the occasion of the 18th commemoration of Genocide against the Tutsi)

For more information about Kizito Mihigo, please visit HIS OFFICIAL YOUTUBE (Kizito Mihigo and All about Kizito Mihigo) channels 

The Founding Philosophy

The fundamental philosophy of the KMP Foundation is based on 3 principles: Christian inspiration, Human mission and the artistic approach.

Art is not just about entertainment. It is also a way to give a message that affects people’s hearts and intellect. Art is a tool for education especially among the youth. The way all people can laugh and cry as an expression of their emotions, is the same way that art (music, plays, poems and others) liked by many, affects people who benefit from it even long afterwards, as they will always remember one artistic work or another because of how it made them feel. The message in artistic works impacts on people’s lives (positively or negatively).

Nevertheless art being a means of entertainment, it’s principal role subsists in transmitting a constructive message in a pleasant and favorable way. Art dedicated to the message and not the other way around. Our country, Rwanda, had Art misused for the sake of propaganda, teaching hatred and disagreement. So called “patriotic” songs, contibruted in teaching Rwandese to kill neighbors, friends or family. We have experienced how efficient this manipulation of art through the artist has been during the preparation of the 1994 genocide.

For example: "Ishyakani CDR ndagatora mama, umwanziwacuniumweniumututsi" It means:"I swear CDR is the only party, we have a common enemy, the Tutsi". Another song that was an important tool for genocide perpetrators was “yeetubatsembatsembe”, literally, "let’s kill them all."The official song of CDR party was played on the national radio every Friday before that party’s program on radio Rwanda. This song contained words like "...abahutu turimaso, CDR kaze neza’’ meaning "we the Hutu are ready, welcome CDR’’ Music definitely played an important role in encouraging Rwandans referred to as Hutu to kill fellow Rwandans called Tutsi.So if music was a tool to exterminate human beings and destroy the society in general, it is only just today to use that same tool in rebuilding our country and restoring morals that were shaken by the genocide against the Tutsi.

Being a Christian Artist, in a country that is liberating itself step by step of manipulations of all kinds and that is trying to find it’s way out from the consequences of the absolute evil experienced, my role will be one of using Art to create a new human being. A new society in which Love thy neighbor and unity reigns. Where forgiveness and reconciliation are really possible. Where peace and non-violence are a preoccupation for everyone. Where human values come before materialistic values and glory. Like Jesus came to this world to help us know more about God, may the beauty of my art more and more become an audible expression of the truth. Jesus preferred being born in a crib and die on the cross to accomplish his mission to save us. May the artist understand the necessity of humility throughout his mission. May the artist understand that he carries something greater then himself. Something that doesn’t perish, something that travels through time and space, centuries and cultures. May the Messenger be humbled by the message he carries for the Message is more important than the Messenger.-Kizito MIHIGO

Therefore, the mission of KMP foundation; using art (music, poems, drama and others) in every possible way, in spreading a message that restores peace, unity and reconciliation, non-violence and the true love of the country.

Our Vision, Mission & Objectives

Our Vision

Building a world whose community interactions and relations are driven by a strong spirit of love for humanity and whose determination for peace is unstoppable. 

Our Mission

The use of Art (music, dance, literature, poetry, theatre, drawing, painting, movie, etc.) dedicated to the spreading of the values of Peace such as love, compassion, truth, reconciliation, forgiveness, unity, humanity, kindness, tolerance, the search for a consensus, non-violence, human dignity and conservation of the memory of the genocide.  

Our Objective

The main objective of KMP Foundation is to provide a platform that promotes peaceful coexistence and peace building activities among people especially Rwandans after genocide. 

Our History and Leadership

After the Genocide committed against the Tutsis in 1994 in Rwanda that claimed the lives of many people including members of his own family, Kizito MIHIGO devoted his life to art and the message of truth on the Rwandan history, forgiveness, reconciliation, unity and Peace. Kizito MIHIGO, himself a Rwandan, was a professional Christian musician whose artistic works called, and are still calling people, especially Rwandans, to live as brothers and sisters against the background of what befell them. Through his songs and testimony in Rwanda and in several countries around the world, the artist invites fellow countrymen to repentance, forgiveness and reconciliation, the surer way to peaceful co-existence for a better tomorrow. Convinced of what his vision is able to bring about, Kizito MIHIGO, at the age of 29 in the year 2010, founded KIZITO MIHIGO PEACE FOUNDATION (KMP FOUNDATION). 

From the original statement :
« Under no circumstances will the foundation denomination and mission ever be altered. Given that the founding philosophy is his own, Kizito Mihigo is the one to devise and preserve the guideline of the foundation, directly or by delegation. »

After his demise, KMP’s leadership stays loyal to preserving KIZITO MIHIGO’s fond vision and his foundation guidelines.  

KMP Foundation operates in different national branch offices around the world that work together towards one vision. We refer to the global coordination of all KMP offices together as “KMP-International”. Established in March, 2016 by Kizito MIHIGO himself, KMP-International provides global coordination to ensure that global standards and policies are pursued, and serves as the implementing foundation in several countries.  As an international organization, KMP Foundation is an association of KMP branches at country level managed by their own boards. KMP Foundation is united under one vision and one mission through the same guideline of his founder; artist Kizito MIHIGO.   

KMP International headquarters which was located in Kigali in Rwanda was moved to Bruxels in Belgium after the death of Kizito MIHIGO from where it can be returned to Rwanda, the homeland of the founder according to the circumstance that the foundation will be in.  The KMP Foundation’s organization and functioning are provided in constitution, Internal Regulation and in the charter of its founder Kizito.