Thursday, May 25, 2006
Congo rape victims -- how to help
After watching Jeff Koinange's story on air or reading his personal take here, many of you are probably wondering how you can help. Here are two organizations working in Congo:

The Swedish Pentecostal Mission -- PMU
Contact person: Marie Walterzon
Tel in Congo (243)-81-318-6246

TEARFUND -- A British NGO
Contact person: Tilly Leuring
Tel in Congo: (243)-997-089-850
Posted By "360" Producers: 11:49 AM ET
  44 Comments
Thanks for the information..Please keep this and other World events as part of ac360..I'd love to see the World in 360 come back to your program..Thanks..Take Care
Posted By Anonymous Lorie Ann, Buellton,Calif. : 10:14 PM ET
Are there addresses for these charitable organizations?

I would hate to see these contact people in the Congo be bombarded with phone calls.
Thanks.
Posted By Anonymous Lynn Pinto, New York, NY : 2:15 AM ET
It would be nice to have an address to send a check to the Swedish Pentecostal Mission, as well as information, do they take U.S. dollar checks, do they have an office in the united states to send money to, so the corrupt Congo people do not take the mail, and money?
Posted By Anonymous Kris Los Angeles : 2:16 AM ET
I just finished watching this report and i would like to say a few things. Number one, thank you for telling us and PLEASE whatever happens, dont stop reporting. I started crying watching this, i cant imagine what those women must be going through. I will pray for them and I encourage anybody reading this to please pray for those women, for their children and husbands, for their country. Only God can save us now.
Posted By Anonymous Lisa Stock, Castaic CA : 2:16 AM ET
This is the most sickening, horrific story that I have heard of in a VERY long time. These monsters make me ashamed of what the human race is capable of. It's a shame that there have been wars that have been fought in this world's history over oil, political gains and downright stupidity, yet there is not every country's armed forces in Congo to overthrow the so called authority figures that are ruining that country. You would expect to hear of a select few serial killers in the history of the world who have committed heinous acts as these, yet this is taking place by a large number of so-called men who are using abusing their position of authority. I am disgusted.
Posted By Anonymous Arjay McKenzie, Toronto ON Canada : 2:20 AM ET
My husband & I were truly horrified by this story, especially after watching Elie Weisel on Oprah today. Here are horrific, inhumane murders and rapes, and what is the world doing about it? Nothing.

I am sickened that my country will spend billions of dollars for a war in Iraq, and yet nothing to help these people.

3.8 million dead since 1998? Hundreds of thousands of brutal rapes - it's truly disgusting that this is being allowed to go on.

What's made me even sadder is when I came here to see what I could do to help, that there were only two contacts, both only reachable by phone in the Congo.

Are there no major organizations doing anything to help? Is there no website or address to send donations to? Are we all supposed to flood these two small organizations in the Congo with long distance phone calls to find out where to send money?

Also - are there no political groups trying to organize letters or trying to get support from the US government?
Posted By Anonymous Michelle New York, NY : 3:05 AM ET
Anderson, calling them in Congo and getting fund to them may not be as easy as it looks. If you really want to help, assist in getting an online presence where people can donate to thier cause. Viewing Jeff's video was an eye opener for me. I'm still struggling to believe it but I know the it is true.
Posted By Anonymous Ola, Toronto, Canada : 4:36 AM ET
This story educated me about something that I really did not know much about pertaining to Congo. I try to stay informed about stuff going on in the world. But the rape, the brutality of what's happening to the women in Congo is something that I am very ashamed to say that I didn't know about. Thank you to Anderson Cooper for having this story on his program and educating us all about this issue.
Posted By Anonymous Elva Keaton, Chicago, Illinois : 5:09 AM ET
Unbelievable story:
Unbelievable story:

We are in the 21st. Century and we still behave like a bunch of Monkeys.
My daughters are the age of 21 and 24, I can�t imagine at how I would react to such brutality, and money is the least I can do to help, obviously not enough.

My check is in the Mail.
Posted By Anonymous Walter From Pittsburgh : 8:19 AM ET
I watched this story lastnight and was absolutely appalled at how these so-called "Peacekeepers" are raping innocent women. These women have done nothing more than help their families as much as possible.
The way these poor women are treated like they are nothing but useless minds was absolutely awful. I was crying just watching this being broadcast; and to think what these woman have gone through. My heart goes out to all of those women who have been though so much.
I personally want to extend a Thank You to Anderson Cooper, Jeff Koinange, and the CNN Production Crew for putting together this story.
I'm glad that there are still News Casters out there that give a Damn about Women's Rights in this world, whether they're from a 1st, 2nd, or 3rd world country, we are all still the same species, and everyone still deserves the same respect.
Posted By Anonymous Valerie Pshebnicki, Winnipeg, MB, Canada : 9:39 AM ET
Thank you so much for presenting this story. It truly does boggle the mind concerning what is going on in the Congo. But what even boggles the mind more is where is the rest of the media coverage, I'm a news junkie, but this is the first that I have heard of it. How can this be overlooked? Everyone else seems too bust sniping at each other to care.

Thank you 360 for presenting stories no one else seems to want to touch. Keep up the good work.
Posted By Anonymous Marcia Warren, MI : 10:11 AM ET
Thank you Jeff for last night's report on the women of the Congo and their unimaginable suffering. No matter how awful - I truly want to see and hear and witness the atrocities happening in places the world rarely sees -- this is critically important. Please continue to let people know how they can take action and shed light and resources on the human disasters occurring globally. Thank you JK.
Posted By Anonymous Stephanie H., Brooklyn NY : 10:14 AM ET
Thank you for such a moving story that needed to be told. How blessed the majority of us are not to endure such suffering. It literally brought tears to my eyes when I saw and heard what was going on in the Congo.
Posted By Anonymous Angie, St.Louis, MO : 10:44 AM ET
Thanks for the info. It is terribly difficult to watch this and not be able to do anything. Maybe that will change.
Posted By Anonymous Anne, Charlotte NC : 10:46 AM ET
Thanks for the info, but I would prefer some info about how people can help rape victims in the US. We should solve our own house first...
Posted By Anonymous Brant, Madison, Wisconsin : 10:56 AM ET
Thank you so much for covering this story and posting info about how we can help. This is exactly the kind of thing 360 does best!
Posted By Anonymous Norah, West Chester, PA : 11:02 AM ET
Thank you for giving us this information.
Posted By Anonymous Melina - Mesa, AZ : 11:24 AM ET
Thank you for broadcasting about the Congo. And thank you for contact information posted here.
Posted By Anonymous Linda, Boulder, Colorado : 11:36 AM ET
ANDERSON:
YOU HAVE THE GIFT OF MERCY. THIS MADE ME HAVE NIGHTMARES. I AHVE TO HELP. I CANNOT REVEAL THIS STORY EVEN TO MY DAUGHTER WHO IS SEVENTEEN. I DON'T WANT HER TO KNOW THIS TYPE OF TYRANNY EXISTS. WE CAN'T KEEP SILENT ANY MORE.
Posted By Anonymous KAREN GARRISON MEMPHIS, TN. : 11:59 AM ET
After seeing CNN every night, especially AC360 I am at a loss for words with the story in the Congo. It is not only the awareness to political warfare and ALL its atrocities constantly happening over there that is difficult to swallow, but the lack of assistance from 'us' as you say Anderson, As much as the entire world should be doing something about this I believe the real people who can change this is the politicians, after all we live in a world of governments (or lack of), policies, laws, economics, and political leaders, who is leading the Rep of Congo? Where is their leader? What kind of government do these people live by, and who are their policy makers on how to handle the population in regards to health, housing, & food? These 'hate crimes' are a desperate cry for attention to this area, thank you so much Anderson for all the stories you bring to light. I enjoy your coverage immensely.
Posted By Anonymous Maria Rivera-Rodriquez, Anchorage Alaska : 12:09 PM ET
About the rape and torture of the women in the Congo,, another group that helps these women it the organization WomenforWomen.org. They accept sponsors for these women and help them regain thier dignity and status in their community.
Posted By Anonymous Dianna Lafranca Ennis, Tx. : 12:16 PM ET
Thank you, thank you for reporting this tragedy and others like it. Your show is deifinitely the 'coming of age of news reporting', where the feelings of human heart has its place in the voice of the reporter.
Posted By Anonymous Dickon Sire, Los Angeles, CA : 12:49 PM ET
I had to respond to Brant of Madison, WI who stated, "Thanks for the info, but I would prefer some info about how people can help rape victims in the US. We should solve our own house first..." We do have organizations that help survivors of rape in America. All you need to do is search the Internet. The survivors of this horrible madness in the Congo have no such resources to turn to, particularly since they live in such remote areas. This is why these reports by AC 360 are so vital. Anderson and Jeff, thank you, and please keep up the good work. We need to keep informed, no matter how disturbing the subject matter is.
Posted By Anonymous Jeannie Yip, New York, NY : 2:44 PM ET
I have learned that sending food and money to Africa etc. is stolen by the Government and is profiting the wrong people. How can we truly get money, protection, health for these families? We need to be able to send money through the mail that will be received by the most honest organizations and hope that you will post some of them with addresses not intercepted by crooked government, soldiers, or any other evil self serving people in this world who have no compassion for suffering families, and are nothing but low-life parasites who are evil.
Posted By Anonymous Ruth, Sarasota, Fl. : 3:59 PM ET
PLEASE PROVIDE A MORE ACCESSIBLE WAY TO HELP.

posting a website and numbers are a wonderful start, but there has to be MORE:
online donation, calling legis/rep/sen, addresses, at LEAST.

people want to help, help us do it. There is always a limit with phone numbers.
Posted By Anonymous Joyce Yang, Cascade Locks, Oregon : 4:06 PM ET
Absolutely devastating, horrific story. It makes my heart ache for humanity.

It would be helpful if you could provide a mailing address for either of these organizations where we can send checks, or provide a website address for online donation. Thank you.
Posted By Anonymous Julia Zaslow, Los Gatos, CA : 4:23 PM ET
Why- please tell me why countries arnt over there fighting for these poor people? I will pray daily for these women and children. Please keep us informed on how to help. God Help Them!
Posted By Anonymous Sheila Porch, Wesson, MS : 4:27 PM ET
in response to Michelle from New York: "I am sickened that my country will spend billions of dollars for a war in Iraq, and yet nothing to help these people."
please take heart Michelle that your country has at least acted to end rape as a political weapon in Iraq, and that some of your tax money has gone to that end.
Note Amenest Intl report, 2001 IRAQ
Systematic torture of political prisoners:
http://web.amnesty.org/library/index/engMDE140082001!Open
start quote:
4 TORTURE, ILL-TREATMENT AND
EXTRAJUDICIAL EXECUTION OF WOMEN
.....Some women have been raped in custody. They were detained and tortured because they were relatives of well known Iraqi opposition activists living abroad. The security authorities use this method to put pressure on Iraqi nationals abroad to cease their activities. For example, on 7 June 2000 Najib al-Salihi, a former army general who fled Iraq in 1995 and joined the Iraqi opposition, was sent a videotape showing the rape of a female relative. Shortly afterwards he reportedly received a telephone call from the Iraqi intelligence service, asking him whether he had received the ''gift'' and informing him that his relative was in their custody.
end quote

I have relatives in Belgium who profited directly from the Congo and the plight of the Congalese, and the lack of action from the Europeans who caused this situation sickens me.
Posted By Anonymous Michael, Orlando Fl : 4:49 PM ET
Here is a link for The Swedish Pentecostal Mission http://www.pmu.se/english/info/spm.php

In this day and age you can find anything on the internet.
Posted By Anonymous Melina - Mesa, AZ : 5:28 PM ET
These are the real terrorists, who have terrorized the women of Congo. A perfect example of the negligence of UN. If it was a proper watch dog with powers, it would have made US and other members of UN to oversee this issue like other nations continue to do for the Iraqi Drama.
Posted By Anonymous Jawad, Toronto, Ontario : 5:40 PM ET
when i saw this story lastnight,it hurt my very soul.i'm still in shock to hear the stories of these women.I just hope who or whatever it is, goverment,god,anybody,can do something really quick about the situation.
Posted By Anonymous caribbean,st.lucia, castries : 5:42 PM ET
SOULS IN STRIDE www.soulsinstride.com
I am extremely touched and encouraged by the outpouring of concern for the women of DRCongo posted by your readers. Just wanted to let everyone know that in Canada, a girlfiend and I run a non-profit organization called Souls in Stride that specifically raises funds to provide fistula repair surgeries, counselling and rehabilitation for women who have been victims of this gender-based violence. We are able to provide tax receipts for Canadian donations and I can assure you that a full 95% of funds received goes directly to help these women. We work in close partnership with the HealAfrica Treatment Centre based in Goma, DRCongo. (www.healafrica.org) Donations from United States can be made through this site.
Dr. Jo Lusi and his team have performed over 750 fistula surgeries since 2002. I visited the HealAfrica Treatment Centre in Goma, DRCongo this past February and came back committed to continue to raise awareness and funding regarding this inhumane atrocity. Currently we are working on a project called "Grounds for Hope" to provide living accomodations, medical centre, community resource buildings, gardens and animal husbandry projects for sustainability and income generation for up to 30 women who have had repeated surgeries but have failed to heal.
Please have a look at our website www.soulsinstride.com for information on how to make a donation or get involved. In Canada you can also send a cheque to:
Souls in Stride
2324 Kings Avenue
West vancouver, BC
V7V 2C4
Through the strength, courage and resilience of these women, I realized that they have given me much more than I could ever give them.
Posted By Anonymous Deborah Woodley West Vancouver British Columbia, Canada : 5:58 PM ET
This whole story is just crushing.
Similar physical damage is caused by the young age (12-14) at marriage/childbirth of women(?) in these african countries. Check out the website for the International Organization for Women and Developement.


http://www.nigerfistula.org/about.htm
Posted By Anonymous Brian, Seattle, WA : 7:09 PM ET
Mr Anderson
We do not know how to thank you for demonstrating merci and compassion toward our people (Congoleese.) I hope that this message will continue to resound in the international community. Rwanda's genocide would not happen if the international community decided an early intervention. Unfortunately, silence due to self-interest led the situation to deteriorate. What congoleese people are experiencing is worse than what happened elsewhere because the rape is taking place while the United Nation force is present. What else can we say, may be our resource richest has become the source of all these abomination.
Again thank you and God bless you!
Posted By Anonymous Yabi kidibu, Raleigh North carolina : 7:52 PM ET
Mr. Anderson,

Thank you for reporting the story. It's about time to learn about these who desperately need help to survive. There are millions of misfortunate people outside of Mexico or Central America. I see many of us would like to help these women. Would it be possible that you or someone at CNN contact these two women in Congo to see how we can get our donation to them directly? Like many people, I want to donate money but don't trust any government agency.


For these who have found out, maybe you can post here so we can ask our friends to help.
Posted By Anonymous Sabrina Liu, Torrance CA : 2:11 AM ET
I would like to know what I could do to help ... donating money is not personal enough. I am a college student in New York and I would love to have an organization in America that is helping. If anyone has any suggestions as to what I can do to make an effort to help these women, I would be glad to work on it. I was thinking about starting something on campus ... but I wouldn't know where to start. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
Posted By Anonymous Samantha, Jericho, New York : 3:11 AM ET
There is another organization that helps provide aid to the women of this devastated region. Please see this direct link and check out the rest of their site:

http://womenforwomen.org/drchelp.html

This organization received an A- rating: http://www.charitywatch.org/toprated.html#women

Thanks to all for their previous posts on how to help, and thanks to all of the crew who worked on getting the story told.
Posted By Anonymous Gretchen Steinberg, Sacramento, CA : 1:28 PM ET
THIS STORY IS SO VERY, VERY, SAD. AND, UNACCEPTABLE. NATIONALLY, SOMETHING MUST BE DONE. I JUST DON'T UNDERSTAND HOW THE UN STANDS BY AND LET ALOT OF WAR CRIMES ESPECIALLY RAPE BE ACCEPTABLE TO ANY HUMAN BEING!!!
Posted By Anonymous COOKIE, WASHINGTON, DC : 3:49 PM ET
Money cannot fully help. It may help the woman temporarily. The only way to save the African continent is education. You have ignorant, uneducated "animals" running most of these countries. Until the men of these countries are held accountable for these horrors and are punished accordingly, and the new generation of men are taught to respect everybody's life, these horrors will continue.

It is aweful... terrible...
Posted By Anonymous A. W. Dallas, TX : 6:31 PM ET
I am the nurse and a teacher at Holy Angels Academy, a high school for young women in Buffalo, New York. I am heart-broken to see what is happening to these women in the Congo. The violence seen all over the world against women is appalling. How do we get to the root of this terrible behavior and turn it around? What makes some men able to do these things?
As horrible as it is to read, these stoies must be told. It is only when a bright light is turned on behavior such as this, and the world is made aware, that collective humanity can rise up and scream about man's inhumanity to (wo)man, and demand that change occurs.
Thank you for reporting this to us.
Posted By Anonymous K.C.W erick, R.N, Buffalo NY : 8:17 PM ET
The incident in Congo is a reflection of man's cruelty against women and powerless children. In time of war, enemies have always taken advantage of the inocent. It goes on in my own country right this minute. Sick minds are everywhere. Calfornia
Posted By Anonymous Helen Borges, Visalia, CA : 6:40 PM ET
Thank you for taking the time to air this inhumane treatment and violence against these defensless women & children. I will keep them in my prayers. Please give an address to send a donation.
Posted By Anonymous Dorothy ,Columbus,Ohio : 7:36 PM ET
I cried when I saw the story of the little boy who had been raped, passed out, woke upand was still being taking turns on by the guards in the Congo. I would like to help that child specifically can you please give his name and where to send funds specifically. His story haunts me, and I am not a softy kind of person. I was beyond disturbed when I saw that story over the weekend on CNN. Where is the concious of these men? How can anyone be so cruel? Dont they have Mothers, Sister, or little Brothers of their own. I am dunb founded by that kind of lack of humanity. Maybe one person can be crazy, but the whole lot of them? God please help us all!
Posted By Anonymous Smith, Oakland, California : 7:43 PM ET
Money is a temporary fix, often do not even reach the ones who need it most and will not stop these crimes. Education and accountability are the keys. We must educate the world of these atrocities and band together as God's warriors to defeat this evil and save the African continent. These men must be held accountable and punished for their crimes.

If you want to help a woman in Congo, visit this website to see how you can help someone get an education and learn to read and write or help with trauma counseling. Knowledge is powerful! http://womenforwomen.org/drchelp.html

Thank You Anderson Cooper and CNN for not being afraid to show the world this story and caring about women's rights! I will pray daily for God's grace and mercy on these women and children. Vengeance will be the Lord's!
Posted By Anonymous Sheila Porch, St. Francisivlle, Louisiana : 2:22 PM ET
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