The plight of displaced people in the Democratic Republic of Congo is still critical, according to Gerry Clarke SJ. Gerry works with the Jesuit Refugee Service in Goma, a city on the border between DRC and Rwanda in the east of the country. The ordinary civilians have been repeatedly terrorised by rebel militias who operate along the DRC-Rwanda border, leading to huge numbers of internally displaced people, many of whom have taken refuge in the five camps in the vicinity of Goma. In four of these camps the JRS runs a series of educational programmes in everything from hairdressing and bicycle repair to tailoring, baking and literacy training. They provide particular support for women victims of sexual violence, teaching them income-generating activities. One of these – weaving ‘basket-schoolbags’ – has been a great success.
The JRS team in Goma