Democratic Republic of the Congo | Development and Peace

Democratic Republic of the Congo


Our program

Development and Peace has been working in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) since the end of the 1970s. The organization supports a number of groups dedicated to consolidating the democratic progress achieved since the 2006 elections and working to build lasting peace.

The program supports initiatives to foster greater citizen participation in the democracy-building process by putting in place civic education activities and creating community radio networks, for example in Katanga province (Lubumbashi, Likasi and Kamina).

République Démocratique du Congo citation

“Listening to RCK has opened our eyes. For example, rape is no longer a taboo subject in our community. Today, when a young girl is raped, we […] go directly to the police and seek justice.”

Cécile Kazadi, RCK listener and member of the Mbalaka listeners’ club-in, Likasi.


The program is also designed to help communities gain more benefits from the exploitation of mining resources, to increase incomes, and to create work for the most vulnerable women and young people by establishing public markets.


The issues we work on to build justice:


and Citizen Participation


Peace and reconciliation


Equality between
women and men




Natural Resources


The situation

Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) is blessed with an abundance of natural wealth (mines, forests, water, earth), yet the country ranks second to last on the Human Development Index (HDI), especially for reasons linked to corruption and poor governance. Over the past ten years, DRC has experienced horrific violence, with various factions seeking to seize power and exercise control over the nation’s vast mineral wealth. 

République Démocratique du Congo map

Thanks to support from Development and Peace, the communities in the following provinces and regions have been sensitized to questions of democracy, non-violence and citizen participation.

1. Kinshasa
2. Bas-Uele
3. Haut-Uele
4. Tshopo
5. Haut-Lomami
6. Tanganyika
7. Haut-Katanga




In spite of the presence of MONUSCO, the most important United Nations peacekeeping force ever established, armed groups control a number of parts of the country, inflicting terror and extortion upon the civilian population and widespread sexual violence upon women. This conflict often causes major displacements, as people attempt to find refuge in camps or reach neighbouring countries. 

February 8, 2016

The exclusion of women has a very real cost. Even so they are the people who suffer most from poverty in today’s world. They endure many injustices and their voices are too rarely heard. In Africa, women are the backbone of societies and represent the strength of the continent. 

April 16, 2013

Three years ago, Floribert Chebeya, a Congolese human rights activist and president of the non-governmental organization La Voix des Sans Voix (a voice for the voiceless), was found murdered in his car. The investigation into his death led to the arrest and trial of several police officers believed to be behind the murder.

February 13, 2013

The Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) has been living a decade-long civil war that has wrought countless atrocities on the population, including six million deaths. Recent fighting around the city of Goma in November 2012 was a stark reminder of the fear and insecurity that civilians face daily in the absence of good governance, rule of law, peace and accountability.

WFP and Caritas provide first assistance to the Congolese displaced by war in Mugunga   camp 3. Photo: Taylor Toeka/Caritas Goma
December 13, 2012

The conflict in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) is getting bogged down, with civilians being its main victims. The Congolese government of President Joseph Kabila and the M23 rebels met in recent days in Kampala, Uganda's capital, to negotiate an end to the hostilities.

November 23, 2012

The taking of Goma in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) by the March 23 Movement (M23) is a major affront to international law and to the largest and most expensive United Nations peacekeeping mission in operation. It has intensified an already alarming humanitarian crisis.

Kanyaruchinya camp North of Goma where 38,000 displaced seek assistance and protection from the conflict.
November 23, 2012

The capture of the city of Goma by ‘M23’ rebels in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) has been a major cause for concern for the security of the local population. Ongoing violence in the DRC since 1996 has led to five million deaths and this latest incident has caused the displacement of an estimated 100,000 people.

Thousands have been displaced in the DRC by conflict
June 22, 2012

Recent conflict between the supporters of General Bosco Ntaganda and the armed forces of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (FARDC) in North Kivu has led to the massive displacement of thousands of people in the region.

December 20, 2011

Conditions surrounding the November 28 elections in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and the irregularities that tarnished them have discredited the Independent National Election Commission (INEC) and the entire electoral process.

December 7, 2011

Pre-electoral process

December 1, 2011

What is the main issue driving these elections? What will influence the vote this time? Almost always, the answer to our question was: Vote sensibly. What does that mean exactly, here in Katanga, the wealthiest province in the Congo and home to the outgoing president?

November 28, 2011

It was still dark when, at 5:30 am, we arrived at the Kiwele Lycée, the voting centre we were set to observe. Already, a number of people gathered at the front gate, which would only open once materials had been delivered to all 25 polling stations at the centre. The centre’s chief and staff were busy counting and distributing packets of ballots across the various rooms.

November 27, 2011

Sunday morning in Lubumbashi, on the eve of the elections. All is calm. Last night, an arms bunker in a nearby military camp was raided, but we heard nothing. We are staying at the Archdiocese Mother House, right next to the St. Paul and St. Peter Cathedral, where scores of praying faithful gather for every mass. We can hear the religious hymns of the magnificent Congolese choirs.

November 24, 2011

The presidential and parliamentary elections taking place on Monday, November 28 hold special importance for the future of the country.

November 24, 2011

When the Development and Peace delegation landed in Lubumbashi, the atmosphere was charged with excitement over the elections.

November 22, 2011

A Development and Peace delegation left today for the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), to observe the upcoming elections. (Read press release)

November 21, 2011

Voters in the Democratic Republic of the Congo will go to the polls next Monday, November 28.

To ensure that proper voting procedures are followed, the National Conference of Congolese Bishops (CENCO) will be deploying some 30,000 independent observers throughout the country.

October 17, 2011

Inspired by the graphic novel Roza or The Courage to Choose Life, which tells the story of the horrific impact of violence on women and children in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), youth members of Development and Peace are taking action to urge the Cana


In the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), violence has become a way of life. Violence against women is particularly rampant and rape has become a weapon of war in the country. In many instances, armed men will overrun a village, attack the inhabitants, rape the women, destroy crops and leave in their wake a path of terror and destruction.

For those who manage to escape, they must return to their villages in the aftermath and try to heal the wounds left behind and re-build their communities with a culture of peace.

Download the Graphic Novel in PDF format



Offer this activity to youth after they have read the graphic novel
Download document

Caritas helps victims of sexual abuse in the DRC

This video, made by Caritas Australia, illustrates the work of Development and Peace partner Caritas Congo with women in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.


Nepal earthquake 1 year on