AMCAV is a grassroots, local Congolese organization founded in 1999 providing services mostly to women who have experienced sexual violence but also the disadvantaged, “vulnerable” population (including the disabled, widows, orphans, and those living with a serious illness), along with the children of these groups.
Since at least the 1996 wars involving Democratic Republic of the Congo (formerly Zaire), rape has been used as a weapon of war. South Kivu and particularly the Ruzizi Plain—location of this project—is a gateway into the country from neighboring Burundi. Even with war subsided in this area, inter-ethnic conflicts and instabilities remain—and so does the now-common practice of sexual violence.
AMCAV provides counseling, social reintegration, and income-generating activities for the targeted women. It is not uncommon for a husband to disown his wife after a rape. He may pay modest tuition fees for his birth children but not for a child born of rape. The child must remain at home in a stigmatized state.
In 2011, teaming up with Annette Scarpitta as part of a 7th-grade initiative, AMCAV began its first project to lift up disadvantaged children (mostly those born of rape) to attend school for the first time and to acclimate them with the rest of the schoolchildren, whose parents can afford to pay school fees. This has been done with great success, but we need donations like yours for the project to continue.