Democratic Republic of Congo
HI works to promote the access of children with disabilities to school in the Democratic Republic of Congo. It also provides support to people affected by a chronic humanitarian crisis in North Kivu, and to conflict victims in Kasai.
Assessing living conditions in Democratic Republic of Congo - Humanity & Inclusion. | © Till Mayer / Handicap International
Actions in process
HI has been present in the Democratic Republic of Congo since 1994. In Kinshasa, the capital city, HI is very active on disability prevention, mother and child health and road safety.
In Kinshasa and Kananga, the association works to improve rehabilitation services, notably by training ortho-prosthetists or by manufacturing mobility aids (crutches, chairs, etc.).
In North Kivu, HI provides support to the most vulnerable in areas affected by a chronic humanitarian crisis. In North Kivu and Kasai, HI is improving the management of disability and post-operative follow-up of victims of armed conflict in health care and rehabilitation facilities. The association also coordinates a logistical platform to facilitate the delivery of humanitarian aid to the most remote areas, in collaboration with other national and international organizations and the United Nations. In Kasai, HI is improving food security for the affected populations. The association also provides victims with rehabilitation care and psychological support.
Throughout the country, HI is strengthening the integration of disabled people in society and fighting for the schooling of disabled children. The association also supports several Congolese associations defending the rights of the disabled.
Finally, the association sensitizes humanitarian organizations to the inclusion of the most vulnerable, so that they are taken into account in the services they provide.
Since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, HI has continued to help the world’s most vulnerable people. We have adapted our interventions in more than 45 countries.
Situation of the country
In the Democratic Republic of Congo, access to quality health care is problematic for most of the country’s inhabitants.
This country, the second-largest nation in Africa, is ranked 176 out of 188 countries in the human development index (HDI). The seriously dilapidated state of the country’s roads and sanitary facilities, and the extreme poverty afflicting the majority of its inhabitants have significant consequences in terms of health. The problems affect the whole of this vast country.
In addition, for more than fifteen years now, the Democratic Republic of Congo has been destabilised by an alarming humanitarian crisis. 13 million people need emergency aid. This crisis is the result of a decades-long unstable local and regional security situation, mainly affecting the country’s eastern provinces. Over the years, multiple armed conflicts and intercommunity violence have left the population highly vulnerable. New conflicts broke out in 2017 affecting previously untouched provinces, such as the Kasai region and Tanganyika. This has severely disrupted the transport of humanitarian aid.
The DRC is also regularly affected by epidemics (cholera etc.), increased exposure to natural disasters and widespread poverty and insecurity. There have also been large population movements both within the country and of refugees from neighbouring countries.
Number of HI staff members: 128
Date the programme opened: 1994