Congolese citizens have been forced to walk a tightrope between leaving or staying, bribing or abstaining, silencing themselves or shouting, dying or living. As a Burundian living within sight of eastern DRC, I have watched the human rights crisis unfold and deepen. Still, a border always operates as a buffer between perceptions and realities. I always wondered if there was more to DRC than darkness, and during my visit I realized that if I am to offer a deeper level of engagement to groups working there, I must start by taking a closer look at this vast and resource-rich country.
Pascal Wana and his wife, Betty Kusemererwa seated outside their home in Rwamutonga, Uganda. The couple and their children were one of 250 families violently evicted from their land by Ugandan security forces in August 2014. Pascal’s vision was irreparably damaged during the eviction. Photo by Robert Mentov December 14, 2018 By Carolyn Ziv, Fund […]
October 16, 2018 By Carolyn Ziv, Fund Staff With its fertile land and lengthy coastline along Lake Albert, western Uganda’s Hoima District is brimming with natural resources. For generations, the bulk of the region’s population has sustained itself through fishing and agriculture—pulling in net after net of Nile perch and tilapia, and growing crops like […]
John Kabia is the Fund for Global Human Rights’ Program Officer for Thematic Initiatives. With over six years of experience managing Fund programs in West Africa, John has seen the region and the Fund’s work greatly evolve. We sat down with him to learn about the human rights challenges currently facing West Africa, and how […]
Mambo Zawadi and Julienne Lusenge of Fund grantee SOFEPADI. Photo courtesy of SOFEPADI. June 11, 2018 By Chloe Gilot, Program Intern Victoria* was 17 years old when Mambo Zawadi arrived at her school in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). As the Executive Director of Female Solidarity for Integrated Peace and Development (SOFEPADI), Zawadi spoke […]
When Sandra Wobusobozi visits rural communities in northwestern Uganda, she often goes alone—armed only with educational brochures and a beat-up motorbike. As a staff member of the Lake Albert Children Women Advocacy Development Organization (LACWADO), Sandra jets between remote areas, training and collaborating with community members to tackle issues ranging from domestic violence, to child marriage, to corporate land grabs. Despite her young age, Sandra’s presence in the communities LACWADO serves is vital to the group’s success.
Nevertheless, She Persists: How Burundian Activist Pamella Mubeza Overcomes Taboos to Improve Women’s Sexual Health
With its conservative gender norms, struggling economy, and limited social programs, Burundi is a difficult place to be a young, single mother. When an unmarried woman or girl becomes pregnant, she is often shunned by her family, cast out of her community, and told not to return to school. Cut off from social support systems, she faces daily challenges meeting her basic needs and those of her child. That’s the bad news. The good news is, thanks to people like Pamella Mubeza, the situation is changing. A pioneering local leader and women’s rights activist, Pamella has dedicated her life to shifting Burundi's cultural norms around sexual and reproductive health and single motherhood.
The Fund recently sat down with activist Alfred Brownell to discuss the importance of natural resource rights to Liberia’s future and the threats he faces.
For most people, surviving a gunshot to the head, losing both your son and son-in-law to brutal murders, and being forced to flee your homeland would be grounds for giving up. But Pierre Claver Mbonimpa isn’t most people. He’s a fierce and fearless activist who won’t let the threat of violence stop him from defending the rights of the most vulnerable in Burundi.
The August 14 landslide and floods in Freetown shocked people around the world. At least 500 people died, and several hundred more remain unaccounted for. This was not simply a natural disaster. Government negligence played a crucial role in the loss of life.