DR Congo + 7 more

CWS emergency appeal: DRC

News and Press Release
Originally published
Appeal #641-R

Appeal amount: $100,000

SITUATION: Even though the Democratic Republic of Congo has held its first open elections in 40 years, violence by militias and foreign troops near DRC's borders threatens millions of refugees who have endured decades of conflict. United Nations figures indicate 3.5 million people have been displaced by DRC's decades of war, even though the country is home to the U.N.'s largest peacekeeping force.

At least 413,000 people still live as refugees in neighboring Burundi, Rwanda, Tanzania, Angola, Uganda and Zambia. DRC regular forces are fighting against foreign troops infiltrating the country as well as against former rebels and militias opposed to army integration. These groups include ADF/Nalu and LRA rebels from Uganda, Democratic Liberation Front of Rwanda (FDLR) militias who took refuge in DRC in 1994 and are now acting as a politico-military movement, armed Mbororo herders infiltrating the DRC from neighboring countries (Sudan, Chad and Central African Republic) and local militias known as Mai Mai and Rasta.

Nearly 81 percent of the DRC's population lives in abject poverty, which limits their ability to escape violence. Complicating matters are significant natural disasters such as torrential rain and hail storms, rapidly growing infection rates of HIV and malaria, and a plant disease outbreak that propagates DRC's food insecurity. Sexual violence against women and girls is common.

CWS RESPONSE: In concert with Action by Churches Together (ACT) members, plans are to assist 22,321 displaced/returnee households (an estimated 156,247 people including 62,500 children, 55,400 women, 36,624 men and 1,723 elderly).

- Food will be provided to 6,585 vulnerable households and 2,400 malnourished children.

- Forty wells will be rehabilitated to provide safe water to 8,000 households.

- 8,456 households will receive kits of non-food items

- 2,387 families will receive plastic sheeting

- Food staple and horticultural seeds will be given to 12,315 households

- 806 women victims of sexual violence will be helped to restore their livelihoods through income generating activities

- 34 schools and 22 health posts will be rehabilitated and all the distributions will be accompanied by awareness-raising on means of protection against HIV/AIDS.

- Training for 23 staff members from participating agencies on humanitarian codes and management principles

Operational partners in DRC include:

1. Bureau Oecuménique d'Appui au Développement (BOAD)

2. Church of Christ in Congo (ECC) South Kivu Province

3. Church of Christ in Congo (ECC) North Kivu Province

4. Church of Christ in Congo (ECC) Maniema province

5. Church of Christ in Congo (ECC) Province Orientale

6. Christian Aid

7. Evangelical Lutheran Church in Congo (EELC)

8. Lutheran World Federation

9. Norwegian Church Aid

The response will focus on four provinces: South Kivu, North Kivu, Maniema and Oriental.

For further information about disasters to which Church World Service is responding please visit www.churchworldservice.org or call the CWS Hotline, (800) 297-1516.

Contributions to support these efforts may be sent to your denominations or directly to:

Church World Service
Appeal #641-R
P.O. Box 968
Elkhart, IN 46515

Contributions may also be made by credit card by calling: (800) 297-1516, ext. 222, or online at http://www.churchworldservice.org.
CWS Emergency Response Program special contacts: (212) 870-3151
Program Director: dderr@churchworldservice.org
International: flumeya@churchworldservice.org
Domestic: lreedbrown@churchworldservice.org