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Public Awareness of DRC Campaign Strengthens

10/30/2008

Public Awareness of Rape in the DRC Strengthens as Violence Escalates

Following the V-Day and UNICEF events in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) in September, which brought together many international reporters, the situation facing Congolese women has been highlighted in numerous international publications and online resources. In addition to the New York Times article Rape Victims' Words Help Jolt Congo Into Change by Jeffery Gettleman, the following outlets have published articles aimed at bringing the issue of rape and violence against women in the DRC to millions of people worldwide.

CHRISTIAN SCIENCE MONITOR: : "In Congo, a doctor keeps helping as rape victims keep coming"

CNN: "Woman: 'They wanted to destroy my body and spirit'"

GLOBE & MAIL: (Toronto): "Rape again rampant in Congo."

GLOBE & MAIL: (Toronto): ""Where repairing rape damage is an expertise""

On Monday, October 27th, violence erupted in Goma, where Congolese civilians protested the dire political stability of DRC, hurling rocks at the UN compound and demanding a better coordinated effort on the part of UN peacekeeping troops. Thousands have been displaced and the situation remains incredibly tense.

NEW YORK TIMES: "Congo City Is Calmer After Night of Violence"

Support V-Day's efforts in the DRC, DONATE:
https://secure.ga4.org/01/drcongo


See Photos from V-Day's Recent Trip to Congo: New Galleries Online

V-Day founder/Artistic Director Eve Ensler has recently returned from a month in the DRC, her third trip since 2007.

Traveling with Eve was renowned photographer Paula Allen, who, on behalf of V-Day beautifully captured the emotional and intimate "Women Breaking the Silence" events with passion and sincerity.

Click here to see images from Goma >

Click here to see images from Bukavu >

For past Congo image galleries please click here >

For more information on the Stop Raping Our Greatest Resource: Power To The Women and Girls of the DRC Campaign please visit www.vday.org/drcongo


Organization for Women's Freedom in Iraq Share Moving Stories of Women Who Have Been Helped

Since 2004, V-Day has been working with Yanar Mohammad, Director of the Organization of Women's Freedom in Iraq (OWFI), to provide safety and education for women seeking refuge from extreme violence and torture inflicted by militias, unleashed since the U.S occupation. In 2004 and 2007, V-Day funded two safe houses for OWFI in Kirkuk and Baghdad respectively.

Yanar has recently shared with V-Day a selection of moving stories of some of the women who have been saved by the efforts of the OWFI. These stories of victory would not have been possible without the continued support and dedication of V-Day activists such as you.

  • Aliaa has been with OWFI in the shelter for more than a year after they helped her out of Kadhimiya prison. She was married to a Sudanese man
    who abused both her, and her brothers. Since arriving at the safe house, Aliaa has proven to have a real sense and strength of leadership. She is in charge of the transitional house and cares for sisters who have gone through similar circumstances. Her outreach into the more hostile districts of Baghdad has helped OWFI assist many women in need.

    Aliaa has no fear from danger and is a true Vagina Warrior. In a community of discrimination against women, Aliaa has gained more energy to answer back and fight for women's rights.
  • Nazik came to OWFI last year escaping a ruthless husband who would not refrain from any kind of abuse against her. After many months with us, she called her parents and told them that she will go back to their house on the condition that they do not force on her a cruel husband. She told them that her new family, OWFI will come and take her again if they do not take good care of her.
  • Ahlam, a 26-year-old mother of two, was surrounded by serious threats on her life. On a 5-hour drive to Baghdad her taxi driver sold her to another taxi driver. When the policeman showed up he paid a better price to take her for himself. She ended up in the chaotic Fadhil district of Baghdad where two groups were fighting over her as their property. She was able to sneak away to make a short phone call to OWFI, who rescued her. Ahlam is currently at the Baghdad Safe House and OWFI is working to get her two children back to their mother and out of harms way.

Your donations help sustain these life-saving safe houses. Visit V-Day's secure online donation page to make your contribution now. Please make sure to write 'Iraq Safe House' in the "memo" field.

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