Women in Democratic Republic of Congo, who face a high risk of being raped because sexual violence is used as a weapon of war there, also suffer from complex health problems, often related to pregnancy and childbirth. HEAL Africa, which offers reconstructive surgery for women who have fistulas, also provides safe transport for women who live in remote areas that are sometimes surrounded by violent militias.
A weakened judicial system in the Democratic Republic of Congo allows offenders to go unpunished and prevents people from accessing justice. Conflict in the region has contributed to this problem, but Brussels-based Avocats Sans Frontières, known as ASF, is trying to combat this issue in DRC.
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.
In Goma’s Birere slum, hazards including candles and kerosene lamps abound, water is scarce, and there are few emergency services or decent roads. Overcrowding is another factor, but a group of young volunteers in the neighborhood has created a fire response service.
Despite environmental, political and financial hurdles since its 1990 opening, Kuimba Shiri Bird Park is still drawing locals, tourists and student groups to its unique wildlife sanctuary. Founded by an aficionado of falconry, the park's diversity of species continues to grow.
“No Hard Feelings” turns scrap metal from planes and cars into affordable kitchenware and other household goods for local people, who can now avoid wandering afar to purchase such items. The business has also created jobs, but there have been complaints about the smoke, odor and possible health effects.
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.
Feeding a desperate need for clean water, business-minded people in Democratic Republic of Congo cross into Rwanda to fill water jugs to sell back home. In the Goma area of DRC, a resource-rich country, the only water available to many people is from Lake Kivu, and people there say it’s not safe to drink.