Inauguration of Rukha Community Centre

Posted on: October 20th, 2019

The Rukha Community Centre was inaugurated by Her Majesty Gyalyum Dorji Wangmo Wangchuck, Founder and President of Tarayana Foundation on 19th of October 2019.

The Centre is a part of the Cultural Sanctuary Project implemented by the Olep community of Rukha in collaboration with Tarayana and the Cultural Sanctuaries Foundation based in the US. The main objective of this project is to propose Rukha village under Athang gewog in Wangdue Phodrang as a Cultural Sanctuary.  Through this project, a Cultural Snapshot of Rukha was carried out in 2017 with an expedition team consisting of both local and expat experts of linguist, anthropologist, botanist and photographers. The report of the cultural snapshot was launched during the inauguration of the centre in Rukha by the Chief Guest, Dasho Karma Tsering Namgyal, Hon’ble Secretary, Dratsang Lhentshog. 


The Centre, built in traditional style, will serve as a community museum to showcase the way of life and will house both material artifacts as well as non material cultural traditions and practices of the Oleps. It will also serve as a repository of all studies, research and documentation carried out on the community.  Interested researchers and visitors to the community can learn more about the Oleps through this Centre.

The first floor of the Centre will be used as guest rooms to host visitors to the community. The income earned from this will be used to sustain the Centre.  This Centre can also help Olep youth learn about and appreciate their unique culture and tradition as a local youth team will manage and run it.

Oleps are also believed to be one of the oldest inhabitants of the country with a unique life style and dialect, both of which are on the verge of extinction. It is thus most timely, to record, celebrate and promote Rukha village as a ‘Cultural Sanctuary’. The proposal to ratify the sanctuary was put up to the Department of Culture through the Gewog and Dzongkhag Administration of Wangdue Phodrang Dzongkhag.

The Centre is built on a 10 decimal plot of land, donated by Ap Chokila, one of the respected community elders.