Collecting garbage and helping kids for IVD in Bukavu
18 December 2007

Bukavu, DR Congo: The International Volunteers Day (IVD) celebration activities in Bukavu, were concentrated on attempting to tackle major development needs of some of the global issues on Sanitation, sports, plight of the Orphaned and Abandoned Children, and the symbolic remembrance of our recently fallen/dead colleagues, especially in 2007. Four projects were planned:

A.    Bukavu City Sanitation/Garbage Collection Campaign.
The City has not had such a program of Garbage collection over the past years. So we thought that we could introduce this by donating Garbage Drums/Cans and some other sanitation materials to the City Corporation and at the same time do a clean-up demonstration campaign together with them.

The program was launched with the involvement of about 40 UN Volunteers, 40 Chinese Engineering Company Military personnel, 25 members of the Local NGO Implementing Partners for the City Corporation, 4 national staff and 30 members from the Bukavu City Corporation

We donated 20 Garbage Drums/Cans prepared and painted with UN colors with Cleaning Slogans, Reflection Jackets for cleaners, Shovels, and brooms. We also did a sensitization demonstration campaign on garbage collection in central Bukavu city, with the City Mayor taking the lead in launching the project.

B.    SOS Orphanage Village
The Orphanage houses children between the ages 0 – 14 years. There are enormous needs for children in the village, ranging from clothing, toys, food, medication etc.

For IVD 2007  (also done in IVD 2004), we donated clothing, teddy bears, treated mosquito nets, some sporting materials, minor ailment balms, exercise books, etc. As this is the Christmas period, volunteers thought it fit that the children needed gifts and toys to “Keep Playing”

For this project there were 35 UN Volunteers, 30 Chinese Military, 25 Pakistani Military and 5 National staff.

C.    ALFAJIRI Sports Rehabilitation Project
In another drive to “let the children play again”, we rehabilitated few dormant sports facilities at the largest school in Bukavu, ALFAJRI, by renovating two of their Basketball and Volley Ball courts. We also donated footballs, a basketball and nets. The school’s authorities and students appreciated our initiative greatly.

There were the same numbers of participants as listed for the SOS Village project above.

D.     Memorial Tree Planting for Late Serge Maheshe and Ibrahim Bangura.
This venture has come as a unique and symbolic idea to our programming in order to also leave a milestone on IVD projects in our own Monuc. Serge, a Journalist with Monuc Radio Okapi, Bukavu was killed last June while still in active service. Ibrahim died last September while also serving as a UN Volunteer in Bukavu. Trees were planted for both and carved stones laid in their memory by both the South Kivu Head of Office and representative from PIO Office Bukavu.

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