Somalilandsun – Friday is International Women’s Day, a time when the world gathers to celebrate women’s rights and empowerment. Here at Refugees International, our advocates are working to preserve women’s basic dignity and human rights.
Last month, a team of RI advocates met Colette at her counseling center in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo. The center sits inside a displaced persons camp and is a vital safe haven for the women who live there.
No less than 10 times each day, Colette meets a woman who has been raped. She listens to their story and provides counsel, then she accompanies them to a camp clinic for emergency care. Every day, women from this camp are attacked while gathering firewood in the nearby forest. The firewood is used both for cooking and as something to sell to earn a small income so that they can buy food to feed their families. But the women are easy targets for the armed militias constantly patrolling the forest.
Colette does her best to support these rape survivors. But she longs for a solution that could prevent these attacks from happening.
Refugees International has a plan to protect women in the DRC. We are working to increase U.S. government funding for firewood deliveries and fuel-efficient stoves so Congolese women won’t have to risk rape to feed their families.
Our advocates are pushing Congress and the State Department to provide $1 million for this vital assistance. But we need your help. Your donations drive our independent advocacy, so please give today and help us achieve our goal.