Democratic Republic of Congo. 

 

Why the Democratic Republic of Congo?

The recent history of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DR Congo) has been marked by civil war and dubbed by some observers as 'Africa's world war'. It is claimed that up to six million lives have been lost either as a direct result of fighting or because of disease and malnutrition. The war has also left huge educational challenges in the country.

We are currently working in two areas within DR Congo. The first is the South Kivu Plateau – a mountainous region on the east side of the country – which suffered some of the worst violence during the civil war. While much of the DR Congo now enjoys relative peace, there is on-going violence in this remote region, fuelled by illegal mining of precious metals. Communities have been displaced, schools destroyed leaving children out of school. Yet few organisations work in this remote region because it is so difficult to access. The second location of our work is Lusenda, which sits on the border with Burundi.

On-going violence in Burundi has caused many thousands of Burundians to flee their homes with 33,000 refugees having adopted Lusenda as their home. Local Congolese schools are overstretched and many refugee children are missing out on quality education.

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What We Do.

On the South Kivu Plateau we are applying our proven model to revitalise the education system and improve communities’ ability to support their children’s education. We are taking a multi-level approach that includes teacher training,
school quality management, engaging parents, removing economic barriers to education and tackling barriers that prevent disadvantaged girls from receiving education.

In Lusenda where schools are overstretched, particularly at secondary school level we are building schools and training teachers to cope with the influx of refugee children. Our teacher training includes methods to identify and support pupils
suffering trauma. As many Burundian refugee children fled their homes with nothing, to support them in returning to school, we are providing young Burundian refugees with school materials, shoes and uniforms.

In total we aim to support 20,000 children in DR Congo over the coming years.