Pierre Yeremian / Return from mission to the Democratic Republic of Congo alongside Dr Mukwege

The tension is palpable here in Bukavu, capital of the province of South Kivu. In this region of the Great Lakes, territories torn by so many conflicts claiming millions of victims over the past 10 years. The latest dramatic events in Kinshasa - we are unofficially talking about 100 dead - are in everyone's mind. But for the moment the streets are calm. 

JI am here at the end of September to continue providing advisory support to medical and administrative teams, in agreement with the Dr Mukwege Denis, doctor and director of the Panzi Hospital. The thematic meetings follow one another. Areas for improvement were previously identified for the benefit of patients, in order to improve treatment and prevent risks (450 beds in this establishment).

To this support is added for me a complementary program in a few days:

  • A first training and coaching seminar for the executives of the Panzi Foundation. This foundation oversees 13 major projects, especially for women survivors of sexual violence, after discharge from hospital. I am impressed by the academic level and the expertise of the management.
  • Two other seminars in the city center: Leadership Team training and “project promoters and self-employed” workshops.

The participants are extremely attentive, despite resignation and loss of self-confidence, in a chaotic social and economic situation.

“I try to transmit practical tools! "

Encouragement also of the people of God by preaching in the local churches of Bukavu, which counts tens of thousands of evangelical Christians. However, one question has been tormenting me for months:

"Why did Christians not make a difference, including for the economic take-off? "

Because I remain convinced that the answer is not only in the hands of the politicians.

Other crucial deadlines are coming in the days and months to come. More than ever this suffering people yearns for a profound change. He needs our intercession and our solidarity. 

Peter Yeremian

President of the NGO Inter Développement et Solidarités based in Strasbourg 

Photo Credit: FLickr CC / ywammadison

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