21May2019

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Our Objective

ADH attempts to counter the advancing urbanization!

Aid is concentrated on places with the biggest populations

More than two thirds of Congo's population live in underdeveloped rural areas. [2] However, development cooperation in the Congo focuses mainly around the capital Kinshasa, with the exception of the east of the country, where most of the media attention is. The rest of the country is pretty much left to itself, especially the population in remote rural regions. There, they lack even the simplest infrastructure such as properly maintained roads. Because of this, vital goods are, mainly due to the cost of transport, extremely expensive. A bag of cement in the capital Kinshasa, for example, costs $ 14, while the same bag of cement in Tshikapa about 1000 km away already costs $ 40 U.S. (as of Jan 2014). It is therefore understandable that most of the resident relief/development organizations are attracted to the more accessible and safer areas with a better developed infrastructure.

Increasing urbanization

In the remote rural areas of the country life for people is very difficult and marked by extreme poverty. As a consequence there has been a large rural migration from the land which has a tendency to rise (the annual urbanization rate is estimated to be 4.2% between 2010 and 2015). [3] With hope of a better life, people are moving from the countryside into the big cities. Overpopulated areas, such as Kinshasa with 10 million inhabitants, [4] are already extremely over-burdened, but continue to grow due to the "influx of refugees" from the rural country, and so the already large problems of big cities are multiplied. For the new arrivals from the country-side the cities fulfill their promise of a better life only in the rarest of cases. In Congo the estimated unemployment rate (persons with no regular income) is currently at around 80% (as of Jan 2014). But also for families with fixed wages the income is often not sufficient. For example, the average monthly salary of teachers in rural areas is currently $ 60 (as of Jan 2014). About 80% of the population has less than $ 1.25 available every day. [5]

Focus on rural regions

How can we attempt to counteract this trend of urbanization in the Congo, unless we tackle it at its source? We have recognized the great need for help in the rural areas and have decided to begin there. We would like to give the people new perspectives on their lives and bring about change for them in their area, especially for the children so that they have a better future. Our daily motivation is the heartfelt wish to be able to give these children a better chance in the world. At the same time we want to be a positive example to other Organizations and encourage them to engage in the inner country as well because an increase of humanitarian aid for the rural areas is of immense importance for the sustainable development of the entire country. We must keep in mind that, trying to create positive change for the rural population in a poor country like the Congo - in spite of all difficulties and obstacles - is not hopeless, wishful thinking. We would like to emphasize this with the example of William Wilberforce: To stop the British slave trade appeared in the 18th century a pretty hopeless feat. Nevertheless, through his incessant pursuit William Wilberforce was finally able to obtain the abolition of slavery in the British Parliament.

[1] UN - Human Development Index (2013)

[2] CIA – Congo: Urbanization

[3] CIA – Congo: Yearly rate of urbanization

[4] CIA – Congo: Kinshasa population

[5] BMZ – Wages in the Congo

Image Gallery
Usual transportation vehicle.Live without electricity - wood fire.Usual infrastructure problems.Typical shop.View on Kinshasa.Street in Kinshasa.Problems of Kinshasa - pollution.Typical scene in Kinshasa.

 The greatest reward was when I stood one morning before the school and the children sang with all their heart beautiful songs as a token of their gratitude.

Our school is growing - now 150 students

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