Project #157 | Empowering Survivors of Sexual and Gender Based Violence
Our partnership with World Relief
*Sensitive Content* Sexual Assault
In the Democratic Republic of Congo, women’s bodies are used as weapons of war by militia groups fueled by tribal conflict. In rural communities, members of armed groups trap and ambush women as they work in agricultural fields or look for firewood in the forests. Nearly 60% of women in Congo have experienced physical or sexual violence at some point in their lives. Instead of being offered comfort and care, survivors of sexual and gender based violence (SGBV) are frequently blamed and shunned for this violation of their bodies.
Our partnership with World Relief brought empowerment and healing to survivors of SGBV. We provided 20 fistula repair surgeries for women and girls who have suffered physical trauma from sexual violence; thee support groups were created so that survivors may share their experiences; 350 survivors were provided with seeds and tools to plant staple crops as well as vegetables that empower her to start her livelihood, feed her family and earn income from any surplus produce. Lastly, our partnership created 158 savings groups where 4,458 survivors utilized their savings to pay school fees, seek medical care or invest in small business or farming activities.
Our collective impact
Survivors Utilized Trauma Healing Curriculum
Youth Educated on SGBV Prevention
“My name is chimanizanye. I am a 52 year old widow from the village of Buvunga. I am a survivors of two rapes by militias. My life was very bad because I suffered a fistula from the rapes and urine leaked out of my body all the time causing a bad odor. I felt really ashamed to be around other people. The second assault happened in my house because it was in very bad condition and the bandit managed to enter it at night without difficulty. But thanks to World Relief, I was able to have fistula repair surgery at the hospital in Goma.
After my surgery, World Relief helped me start my own business selling oil as an income generating activity. Thanks to this small business, I earned enough money to build a better house and church members who followed the teachings of World Relief to serve vulnerable women helped me. I thank God and World Relief for its assistance and the support it continues to give me as I work to overcome the trauma of sexual violence.”
Thank you for making this possible!
Our movement is grassroots, to us that not only means the work on the ground is led by local leaders with the support of the community, but it also means that we raise the funds for our projects through everyday donors just like you. In addition to all the donors that gave $25, $100, or $250 and the campaigners that ran a race or donated their birthday to raise funds, we also want to thank our generous business, school, and faith sponsors who believed in our work and joined the movement.
If you want to support future projects like this you can make a donation to our gender based violence fund.