Child empowerment and protection: DR Congo
The Democratic Republic of Congo, especially the Eastern side of the country, has been heavily affected by conflict over the last number of decades. This conflict has had a particularly tough impact on the children of this region.
Team Hope is working with a local partner in the border town of Bukavu to help improve the protection of children who live on the streets of the town, many of whom are victims of abuse.
Through this project, Team Hope and its partners are working to reunite these children with their families or to find them a foster family – so far this has been possible for nearly 200 children, the older of which are getting skills training so they can have a bright future career.
Medical care has also been provided for children living on the street and legal services provided to help bring justice for some of those who have suffered abuse. But this project is also seeking to bring change at a higher level and raise awareness amongst the local government of the plight of street living children and to stop child abuse. This has included radio broadcasts to make the whole population aware of child rights and child abuse as well as meetings with key government officials to influence policy.
Addressing this terrible problem both through helping the affected children directly, as well as trying to raise awareness of its impacts, will hopefully bring lasting change to the children of Bukavu.