Democratic Republic of Congo

Article Index

AVSI in DRC

Current and Recent Projects

Additional Information


AVSI in DRC

AVSI’s involvement in the Democratic Republic of Congo began in the early 1970’s in the Ruzizi Valley, north of Uvira, located in South Kivu with the establishment of the “Centre de Développement Communautaire de Kiringye” (CDC-K), a driving force behind the social-economic recovery and development of 90,000 rural people after the prolonged social conflicts that characterized DRC following its independence. In the late 1970’s AVSI expanded its operations to two additional areas; Bunyakiri in South Kivu and Walikale in North Kivu, supporting agricultural production, food security, and social and health care activities through multi-year programs. As of 1999, AVSI projects in DRC were severely restricted as a result of general insecurity and lootings.

In 2002 AVSI began a period of expansion by responding to the emergency and reconstructive needs in the vicinity of Goma following the eruption of the Nyiragongo volcano. Since then, AVSI has used its base in Goma to address the emergency needs of many other territories in North and South Kivu reaching 458,000 direct beneficiaries and more than 3,500,000 beneficiaries at large including 294,295 school children, and 6,554 teachers of 1,500 schools. Among their other projects, in 2006 AVSI opened another base in Bukavu, South Kivu for the implementation of the UNICEF funded Program of Expanded Assistance to Returns (PEAR). This program, emphasizing and addressing urgent educational needs of the over 40,000 displaced children, includes the renovation and rehabilitation of schools, distribution of teaching and learning materials, and the implementation of educational campaigns determining parents’ preference concerning school management.

Today AVSI continues to maintain a significant presence in DRC. Its work is extensive and encompassing, with a special emphasis on education but also focusing on food security, non food emergency items, child protection and infrastructure construction and rehabilitation. The numerous projects are very diverse in nature, as they originate from the specific challenges faced by the Congolese every day. Current projects included but are not limited to the refurbishing of dilapidated schools, teacher training, and afterschool programming to healthcare improvements, road construction and population surveying. AVSI’s main bases are located in Goma, Bukava and Uvira. It also maintains field bases in Kitshanga (Rutshuru/Masisi), Pinga (Masisi/Walikale), Kisharo (Rutshuru), Kalehe, Shabunda, Mwenga, Bunyakiri, Kilembwe and Minembwe. 2 more operations are currently being opened in Kalembe and Rubaya. Together with UNICEF, AVSI co-leads the Education cluster in North Kivu and the Early Recovery cluster (RRC) in South Kivu. In South Kivu AVSI also serves as the secretary focal point for the Education Sub-cluster in Uvira. In this capacity, AVSI is working with the United Nations Interagency Standing Committee (IASC) attending the Inter-cluster meetings.


Current and Recent Projects

 

Program of Expanded Assistance to Returns Plus (PEAR+)

Location: South Kivu and North Kivu Provinces

Date: 2006-2012 and OCHA

Description: Rapid appraisal and multi-sectoral analysis to monitor the trends of returning displaced people; information on prevailing conditions in their places of origin provided to over 80,000 families.  Increase the availability of data, information and results of monitoring for humanitarian donors in the community in order to fine-tune further coordinated support interventions.  Promotion of and support provided to the CHB (Basic Humanitarian Committee) for the selection and follow up of the recipients of non food items; over 1,000 return kits provided including blankets, cooking sets, plastic sheeting, clothing, soap etc. Increase access to non-food items, including through the innovative use of vouchers and fairs Structural and functional rehabilitation of health care units and schools. Distribution of educational material, recreational kits and teaching aids; over 8000 primary school pupils provided access to educational services.

Major Donors: UNICEF

 

Rapid Response to the Movements of Populations (RRMP)

Location: South Kivu and North Kivu Provinces

Date: 2010-2012

Description: Offer emergency protection for 40,000 internally displaced children in and around settlement camps in the petit Nord, North Kivu by creating protected spaces in 12 IDP camps and 10 villages throughout the territories of Masisi, Ruthsuru, Goma/Nyragongo and Luberu. Improving children’s psychosocial well-being through diversified activities promoting community involvement. Train AVSI personnel and volunteers on psychosocial child protection. Reduce child separation from their families and facilitate tracing for family reunification. Promote smooth coexistence among the displaced people an permanent residents in the area.

Major Donors: UNICEF

 

Distance Support Program (DSP)

 

Location: North and South Kivu

Date: 2009- present

Description: Long-term support to over 1,500 OVCs improving the conditions for psychosocial and academic progress, while strengthening the capacity of the children’s families, caretakers and local organizations to respond to their needs. Fulfillment of school requirements (uniforms, books, fees etc), organization of after school recreation and educational activities, and creating of programs designed to improve the economic status of the child’s family through training and support to parents.

Major Donors: Private donors

 

Increased Food Security

Location: Rutshuru and Masisi (North Kivu)

Date: 2006-2012

Description: Provision of food items and seeds (vegetables and food crops), provision of basic tools for seed multiplication in collective fields and special nutrition items for the children of the most vulnerable families.

Major Donors: European Union, ECHO

 

Quality Education, Family Support and Community Development

Location: Masisi and Rutshuru (North Kivu)

Date: 2006- 2009

Description: Improve education, family support and community development in 15 primary schools. Educational interventions such as construction and rehabilitation of schools, adult literacy support and review courses for teachers. Integrated support for vulnerable families, including income generating activities. Direct support to orphaned or vulnerable children (OVCs). Benefits 14,943 individuals (845 OVCs, 6,560 students, 750 teachers, 12 local associations)

Major Donors: Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs

 

Emergency Protection Response for Internally Displaced Children

Location: North Kivu

Date: 2008-2009

Description: Offer emergency protection for 40,000 internally displaced children in and around settlement camps in the petit Nord, North Kivu by creating protected spaces in 12 IDP camps and 10 villages throughout the territories of Masisi, Ruthsuru, Goma/Nyragongo and Luberu. Improving children’s psychosocial well-being through diversified activities promoting community involvement. Train AVSI personnel and volunteers on psychosocial child protection. Reduce child separation from their families and facilitate tracing for family reunification. Promote smooth coexistence among the displaced people an permanent residents in the area.

Major Donors: UNICEF

 

Infrastructure Improvements

Location: Minembwe (South Kivu)

Date: 2008-2010

Description: In depth socio-economic survey to provide a framework for future integrated interventions to foster accessibility and communication. Physical and functional rehabilitation and expansion of the Minembwe Hospital and of the healthcare center of Kilingi improving access to health care for 65,000 individuals. Construction and equipment of 28 new classrooms in Minembwe, Jujenge, Madego and Kabingo with water and sanitation facilities, teaching aids and other educational materials benefiting 1,101 pupils. Hiring and training of 28 teachers.

Major Donors: European Union, EDF

 


Additional Information

March 2012 European Commissioner visits activities in South Kivu

                    Full report of European Commissioners Visit

October 2011 UNICEF and AVSI, strengthening education and health in DRC

January 2011 (Articles and Video) Recognition by UNICEF of AVSI's Education Programs in DR Congo

Innovative Education Approaches in Emergency Settings: DR Congo