Indigenous Pygmies on DRC’s Idjwi Island have faced generations of discrimination, and the minority community struggles to survive as land, education and medical care remain out of reach for most. Now, one member of the community who beat the odds to complete his education is determined to provide the same opportunity to others.
As Kisangani’s under-resourced police force struggles to maintain law and order, residents have lost faith in the state’s ability to bring criminals to justice. Now, some are taking crime and punishment into their own hands – with deadly consequences.
A former child soldier started an amateur boxing club in Democratic Republic of Congo to help other young soldiers move beyond their pasts. Now, boys and men from varying ethnic groups work together to find success in the boxing ring.
Many children in DRC say they were pushed out of their homes when their parents or relatives accused them of witchcraft. There are few places for such children to find shelter in DRC, but one religious center opens its doors to them.
In DRC, there is a long history of distrust between local people and members of the national army. But in one village, people from the two groups are singing their way to a better understanding through a church choir group.
Each month, there are about four murders in Kirumba, a rural community of about 35,000. In response to the chaos that has become a way of life here, a community group called Silwamughuma was formed a year ago, so far helping more than 40 families as they mourn their loved ones.
Insecurity continues to take its toll in the DRC. After 20 years of successive conflicts, an estimated 1.5 million people in the DRC have been displaced from their homes. One advocate urges humanitarian organizations to teach displaced girls the basic trades so they can earn money and avoid resorting to survival sex.
Conflict that’s been consistent in this region since the 1990s has caused parents and children to lose one another in the chaos. Radio announcements are one local method of reuniting separated family members, and large aid agencies are also working to identify lost children and reunite them with their families.
Sexual violence against women and children is a major problem in the Democratic Republic of Congo. The commander of a local civilian police unit, which works to curb violence and bring offenders to justice, sat down with GPJ for a Q&A to talk about his efforts.