The eastern region of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) has been the scene of prolonged armed conflict, characterized by systematic and widespread sexual violence against women and girls. This sexual violence, perpetrated by groups of state and non-state actors, has left deep and lasting physical and psychological scars. In the current context, the consequences of these conflicts require multiple interventions. Refusal to intervene is an alarming sign. We seek to examine how survivors deploy individual and collective resilience to rebuild their lives. The study therefore aims to understand the trajectories followed by survivors of sexual violence in their quest for reparation and reconstruction of the social fabric. The contribution to reparation is likely to go beyond affected individuals to include community support strategies and the necessary social changes. The research uses a qualitative method combining in-depth interviews, case studies, observations and focus groups in North and South Kivu in the east of the Democratic Republic of Congo, to explore the mechanisms of social resilience, the factors facilitating individual and collective reconstruction, and the obstacles encountered along the way. Emphasizing the need for both individual and social reparation, transitional justice will help restore social cohesion.
  • Funded by: Flemish Interuniversity Cooperation VLIR-UOS
  • Time period: 2023-2027
  • People Involved: Maria Martin de Almagro (Ghent University), Karen Büscher (Ghent University),  Stef Vandeginste (University of Antwerp), Furaha Mirindi Germaine (Evangelical University in Africa/DRC), Chambu Ntizimire Pierrot (University of Bukavu/DRC)