Country Overview

Capital Population Religion Economic
Christian Evangelical Islam HDI Rank GDP Per Capita
Kinshasa 79,545,000 92.2% 19.39% 10% 176 of 188 $470

The Democratic Republic of the Congo (or D.R. Congo for short) is located in west central Africa. By area, it’s the second largest country in Africa. It has a population of more than 85 million, but also one of the world’s lowest life expectancies. At a quarter of the size of the United States, D.R. Congo’s vast jungles and mountainous landscapes are rich in natural resources. Yet, rather than enrich its citizens, these vast resources have often been a source of D.R. Congo’s poverty, as opposing parties and corrupt politicians have fought for controlling stakes. The Second Congo War (1998-2007), at times referred to as the “African World War,” accounted for some 5.4 million deaths. 47% of those who died were children under the age of 5, most of them dying indirectly from the war due to a lack of food, malaria, or the effects of unsanitary living conditions.

As one of the world’s absolute poorest countries, few people stand to benefit more from holistic training than the Congolese population. However, working in D.R. Congo is not without challenges. Rebel attacks, an internal mineral rights conflict, and some of the weakest infrastructure in the world, makes it difficult for trainers even to reach their destinations. Some churches have also been displaced, and many live in hiding, fearing the endless outbreaks of violence. Extreme poverty and hunger remain endemic across DR Congo despite humanitarian aid interventions. According to the African Development Bank, 72% of rural households and 59% of urban households are poor. Nearly 40% of children under five suffer from chronic malnutrition and most live under conditions of moderate to serious food insecurity.


Program Overview

Location Reach Setting Program Started
Eastern Congo 4 Communities Urban 2015

Program Impact

Four initial Community Health Evangelism (CHE) trainings were conducted and attended by pastors and community leaders. Even with limited training, Pastors from more stable regions have begun to engage their communities, and small transformation projects have ensued, using local initiative and resources. One community has built a small health clinic with locally produced mud blocks, and wood cut from a nearby forest. Another has installed tin roofs on 30 homes, and yet another has built a rudimentary school building. These are all local initiatives resulting from two CHE trainings. The training is still in its infancy, but the self-reliant, hardworking mindset that is evident in the Congolese churches have made us believe that they can succeed despite the evil forces that are at work all around them.

 

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Data Sources:
Population and Religion: www.joshuaproject.net
HDI Rank: hdr.undp.org/en/composite/HDI
GDP Per Capita (2015): en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_IMF_ranked_countries_by_GDP