Democratic Republic of Congo | ActionAid UK

Democratic Republic of Congo

  • 100
    Over seven million children are missing out on primary education.
  • 100
    2.7 million people are internally displaced due to conflict.
  • 40
    Nearly 40% of girls are married before the age of 18.

The majority of the country’s poorest people live in rural areas, where limited access to clean water and sanitation cause outbreaks of deadly diseases like cholera.

Women and girls in rural areas are very vulnerable to sexual violence – millions of women have been raped and abused over years of conflict. Half of all women aged 15-24 are illiterate.

How we’re changing lives for good in the DRC

We have a long-term programme working with local partner organisations in 15 areas across the North and South Kivu Provinces – home to an estimated 12 million people.

We provide psychological support to survivors of sexual violence, and put a stop to violence before it happens. We run workshops with the police and military to find ways to ensure that laws against sexual violence are understood and enforced.

We also build the resilience of communities affected by conflict, by providing agricultural tools, seeds and training to help them become self-sufficient.

Together with local, grassroots women’s organisations, we’re helping women and girls to lift their communities out of poverty — for good. 

2019 Ebola outbreak

ActionAid is currently responding to an outbreak of Ebola in the DRC, where at least 1,500 people are reported to have died.2

We are working closely with local groups who are rooted in communities and have the trust of local people. In particular we are working with women, who are often the first reponders in emergencies like this outbreak.

Our response is focused on:

  • Training women in how to prevent Ebola, including education about vital hygiene measures that people can take
  • Working with government and other organisations to ensure clear, accurate information is distributed to communities, in local languages
  • Working closely with ActionAid Uganda to prevent the spread of disease across borders.

We are preparing to expand this awareness-raising work, including tackling misconceptions about the disease in the communities where we work.

Find out more about Ebola, its impact and ActionAid’s work responding to outbreaks.


Top image: Women in an ActionAid-supported group in South Kivu Province in Democratic Republic of Congo, learning climate-resilient sustainable agriculture techniques. ActionAid