Christian Aid in the DR Congo update May 2004
The human impact of the present war has been immense, with 4.7 million people killed by fighting, starvation and disease.
Millions have been forced to leave their homes, with many children separated from their families and thousands orphaned by AIDS. Rape, a widely used weapon of war, has increased the prevalence of HIV/AIDS.
Christian Aid has field offices in Kinshasa, western DRC, and in Bukavu, eastern DRC, and works with 30 partner organisations in the country.
All programmes are carried out by our partners and focus on making sure people have enough food; rehabilitating displaced people; supporting small businesses; HIV/AIDS work; peace projects and rebuilding lives after the volcanic eruption in Goma.
The Christian Aid field office staff work closely with the partners to support them in their work.
Christian Aid's partners in Kinshasa were placed on high security alert over the weekend of the 28 March 2004 following attacks by militia groups on several military installations. The assailants were defeated by the government armed forces.
In mid-February 2004, fighting broke out in Bukavu between local Rassemblement Congolais pour la Democratie rebels and regional armed forces after the arrest of a rebel officer accused of arms trafficking.
The fighting forced the Christian Aid field office in the east to close temporarily. The situation has now calmed down and the UN mission to the DRC (MONUC) is working with the army in the continuing search for arms.