A joyful day in Tshijiba !

life is resuming in Kasaï

A smile after months of violence in Kasai (UNICEF DRC 2017 Rose)

BLOG – After months of violence, life is resuming in Kasaï. A special day was organized in Tshijiba, to mark the return to normal life !

Tshijiba, a territory marked by the conflict

The Tshijiba area is located in the Miabi territory, 80 kilometers from the town of Mbuji Mayi. This is one of the sectors that has been the scene of atrocities during the clashes between the police and the Kamuina Nsapu militia. Fleeing their villages, entire populations have found refuge in agricultural settlements, far from all basic social services. During the clashes, tens of people died, numerous cases of rape were reported, children enlisted in the militia, and infrastructures were completely destroyed.

With the return to calm, the displaced populations are starting to return to the villages. Tshijiba served as a platform for launching advocacy activities for children’s rights and protection in sites targeted for humanitarian responses.

Communicating to the greatest number

A huge crowd stormed the place because nobody wanted to miss this unprecedented event announced through all the local media! The representatives of the Government, the members of Parliament, the various political, religious, customary, security, humanitarian, sports, and Community groups were all at the rendezvous.

The Green Esplanade, not far from Tshijiba maternity ward, has been decorated to give a festive appearance to the place: banners, posters, small posters, and t-shirts marked “I am a child”. The messages were clearly visible of all: the place of the child is at school, in play areas, and with the family; the adoption of family practices is essential.

The Hope Music Orchestra has organized a big concert to celebrate peace through songs and to promote the rights of the child as well as the essential practices. There was really a great atmosphere!

Promoting children’s rights

Children’s place is not in the field work, nor in the middle of communities’ feuds, nor in marriage, and even less in political parties.

Province’s Vice-Governor reminded that it is necessary to place the children at the center of all interests, to protect and reassure them. The same message was echoed in Tshiluba by the  Children Reporters: “ntshidi mwana” (I am a child).

Translated from French by Dorsaf N. James

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Willy Mbemba Mavula

Willy Mbemba Mavula est nutritionniste de Santé Publique pour le bureau UNICEF de Mbuji-Mayi.

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