American Friends of Kesho Kongo

The Congo of Tomorrow

Action Sociale Kesho Kongo (DR) A Project of A | KBFUS Funds

The Future of Congo

ACTION SOCIALE KESHO KONGO is a local nonprofit that focuses on Health, Education, Agriculture and Farming. (Kesho Kongo in Swahili means "The Congo of Tomorrow" or "The future of Congo").We are located in Bukavu, in the eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo, a post-conflict region.

Our mission is fighting malnutrition and hunger; empowering youth and rural women, and promoting peace and human rights through culture.

http://www.keshokongo.org/

Part of the Education program is "The Our Lady of Peace Ballet", a cultural youth group of Bukavu in the eastern DR Congo founded in January 2013 consecutively to the Peace Prize in the Great Lakes region awarded to Adolphe Nyakasane by "Search for Common Ground" (an American NGO committed in peace and conflict resolution), with the support of USAID. That, after a proposal in an inter-university competition placed under the theme: "what can we do as youth so that the Great Lakes region may become a haven of peace in 2025?"

Through music, traditional dances, youth forums and theatrical performances, the group advocates for peace, fraternity and cohabitation among the citizens of the DRC, Rwanda and Burundi.

The health projects aim at addressing malnutrition in children under 10 years old and to promote health education (on communicable and noncommunicable diseases, vaccination, health insurance) via local medias (Radio and TV).

The agriculture and farming mainly aim rural women empowerment.

To sum up our activities, we may underline this:

Health: Once a year, we launch a local fundraising to help patients and malnourished children in our hospitals in Bukavu. We distribute milk to malnourished children in Luvungi (an average of 40 children every month). We insist on health education on communicable and noncommunicable diseases via medias (broadcasts in the main radios and TV in Bukavu). We provide education for midwives each year during their International Day in May.

Education: We have the activities of the Our Lady of Peace Ballet, promoting peace, fraternity and peaceful coexistence between the people of the Great Lakes Region (DR Congo, Rwanda and Burundi). We support the training of disadvantaged youth in carpentry, masonry and automobile mechanic at "Centre de formation Professionnel St Joseph, in Murhesa". We have the "Café Littéraire SIMAMA", a youth gathering that focuses on discussions about development, once a semester. We provide Education to peace, democracy and human rights via local medias (Radio and TV).

Agriculture: We are strongly committed to empowering rural women working in agricultural cooperatives. We promote the cultivation of corn, soy, rice and cowpea.

Farming: providing hens, guinea pigs and pigs to 10 selected rural families each year.

For next year, we are fighting to be able to manufacture high protein biscuits, powder and milk from cowpea (cowpea is a tropical plant, very rich in protein).We are also planning to launch an important Festival: "Festival of Unity and Reconciliation" for the Great Lakes Region (Congo, Rwanda and Burundi).We also hope to be able to provide agricultural loans to rural women working in agricultural cooperatives.

PROJECT FOR WHICH WE ARE FUNDRAISING CURRENTLY:

Fighting Malnutrition in Children under 10, in South Kivu (eastern DR Congo)

Malnutrition is a scourge in South Kivu where, according to the latest statistics of UNICEF (United Nations Children's Fund), the rate of chronic malnutrition is 53%. Indeed, 53% is the visible part of the crisis because most of malnourished children don't go to hospitals or healthcare centers. The stay home and very often die there; especially in villages.
Kesho Kongo, a nonprofit located in Bukavu (capital of South Kivu Province), is led by Dr. Adolphe Nyakasane. Last summer, Dr. Nyakasane studied Public Management at Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs (Syracuse University, Syracuse, NY) and is committed to fighting this scourge using local resources.
The Kesho Kongo's current project is to manufacture high protein biscuits, powder and milk from cowpea. (cowpea is a tropical plant very rich in protein). The idea is to harvest cowpea leaves, crush them, press them, collect the high protein juice, coagulate it and produce high protein biscuits. (such experience succeeded in Benin, western Africa). To launch that process, Kesho Kongo needs a grinder and a press, two machines that cost $8,000. We have $3,000 and need an additional $5,000 to launch the project.

Every month, 250 malnourished children will be receiving cowpea biscuits and powder from Kesho Kongo. Kesho Kongo is seeking financial support to get the two machines needed, but also to conduct nutritional education in families, especially rural families. Nutritional education is important because more often, malnourished children are treated then sent home (discharged), but 3 or 4 months later, they return to the hospital for the same problem of malnutrition. The issue is that mothers are not educated on how to feed their kids well. Kesho Kongo will be going into families in order to provide nutritional education to mothers but also to do a follow-up on former treated malnourished children. This is a door-to-door approach to fighting malnutrition.Kesho Kongo is also committed to promoting outreach on fighting malnutrition via songs in local languages, pamphlets, slogans, conferences and via broadcast on local media (Radio and TV). The need is real and urgent. Eastern DR Congo is a post-conflict region, striving to recover from 2 decades of wars and rebellions during which 6 million innocent people were killed. Kesho Kongo promotes resilience in communities and works to empower youth and rural women.
Thank you so very much for your support!

How can you help?

Alternative ways to give:

For gifts by check: Write your check to KBFUS, write "American Friends of Kesho Kongo" in the memo section of the check, and send it to KBFUS, 10 Rockefeller Plaza, 16th Floor, New York, NY 10020.

Gifts by wire transfer or to contribute other types of property: Email KBFUS at: info@kbfus.org or phone (212) 713 7660.