Violence occurs in conflict and non-conflict zones. Abuse, sexual exploitation, sexual harassment, domestic violence, child marriage, and harmful traditional practices occur in schools, homes, workplaces, and in public spaces across the country.
In order to combat Gender Violence and Abuse and promote more harmonious relations between women and men, the Government of the Democratic Republic of Congo launched the pilot initiative “Women and men, let’s Progress together” in the provinces of Kinshasa, Maniema, and the former Province of Bandundu. The program is supported by the European Union, in partnership with thepUnited Nations Children’s Fund which co-funds the program and the German Cooperation (GIZ).
In 2016, participatory theater and media campaigns raised awareness among 70,000 adults and 31,000 children of sexual and gender based violence and 27,000 households benefited from microcredits or inclusive financing. The program also allowed for the support of 1,500 survivors of sexual and gender-based violence.
The program “Women and men, let’s progress together” has made significant progress on gender and equality issues with the adoption and promulgation of amendments to the Congolese Family Code. It establishes for children the prohibition of minors’ marriage, and for the gender issues, the substitution of marital authorization with the consultation between spouses.