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About SOFAD

By admin on 27 December 2011

Women and children have been victims of violence in the Democratic Republic of Congo for many years. This is a result of the ongoing fighting between armed groups and the lack of protection during conflict.

The country has been ravaged by conflict with the 1998 – 2003 civil war causing the death of over four million people. Sexual violence against women and children was part and parcel of the general violence perpetrated during this civil war. It continues today with many of the people responsible still going unpunished. This impunity and the continuing insecurity in the country means that women and girls live in constant fear of further attacks.

The consequences of sexual violence for women include sexually transmitted diseases, HIV/AIDS and social rejection.

SOFAD in the Democratic Republic of Congo

SOFAD (Solidarite des Femmmes Activistes pour la Defense des Droits Humains - in English, the Solidarity Movement of Women Human Rights Activists) is an organisation that works through a grassroots network of 625 women to research and campaign against sexual violence, and provide counselling and help to rape survivors. SOFAD also educates local communities on women and children’s rights, and lobbies the government to deliver justice and reform discriminatory laws.works through a grassroots network of over 600 women in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

SOFAD Ireland (Registered Charity CHY 17715)

SOFAD IRELAND assists two parts of SOFAD's work: 

  • the provision of training, education, counselling and help to rape survivors;
  • the education of local communities in relation to sexual violence and its consequences.

In particular SOFAD Ireland provides financial support and practical assistance to SOFAD for specific programme in the Kivu provinces. These are in the Eastern part of the DRC, near the border with Rwanda.

SOFAD IRELAND also undertakes information programmes in Ireland in relation to violence against women, particularly those affected in the DR Congo. It is a registered charity (CHY 17715)