Democratic Republic of Congo
In 2016, with a population of 225,000 people, Bukavu, South Kievu, Democratic Republic of Congo is a bustling capital with a lot of personality despite the various conflicts that have occurred in the region over the last two decades. Rampant corruption has made it difficult for entrepreneurship to thrive. Unemployment is over 60% and the average life expectancy is around 49.6 years of age. With 66% of the population under the age of 25 our focus was on the future leaders of Bukavu because this is where true change from within will happen.
2016 was our first trip to DRC. With the partnership of Nicolas Kyalangalilwa, Redeemer City to City church planter and pastor of Le Phare, we held leadership and management workshops for traditional university-aged future leaders and entrepreneurs as well as established community and business leaders. This church started in 2013, and has English and French services. About 80% of the congregants are unemployed, and we'll try to help upgrade their skill level through these courses.
Our goal is to expand upon the entrepreneurial and leadership workshops delivered in the first trip and to further train and equip young leaders to implement actionable change in serving their community. Holding these workshops and hosting lunches for the participants have been very fruitful in developing relationships and getting to know and understand the needs of the community. We also hope to host the church’s second annual retreat and provide an opportunity for deeper fellowship and growth together. The retreat is located a few hours from Bukavu in Rwanda, and it's a great opportunity for the church as a whole to grow their communal relationship. The team stays in private homes and attends community group Bible studies, which will provide further opportunities to be immersed in the culture and in community.
We would like to have teammates who are in the Business and Finance fields, but the trip is open to all. As the DRC is a French-speaking country, French speakers are very much wanted! While it’s not necessary to speak French for this trip, it is especially useful in collaborating and interacting with participants. Our inaugural 2016 trip went very well, and we're excited about deepening the relationship between Le Phare and Redeemer August 24-September 4th, 2017!