I won’t say much yet. Emmanuel and Zione are still in the process of sending data collected in North and South Kivu. We conducted quantitative and qualitative interviews with women, focus group discussions with community members and key informant interviews with health workers, business owners and others.

We have all learned so much with this study.

Traveling to Goma

Shimmering Lake Kivu

The DRC is beautiful, complex, and riddled with corruption and poverty. Our team went to places where women couldn’t be interviewed because the neighboring village had been attacked by rebels. They avoided places that were insecure and ‘owned’ by rebels. They traveled days into the field where they were cutoff from surrounding areas because of insecurity. The team worked intensely and despite major challenges.

Zione and Emmanuel are powerful, determined, impressive leaders.

Zione Themba and Emmanuel Kambalame

I am humbled by their work. For all of the our team in Goma and Bukavu, I tip my hat, I bow, I thank you. As I receive the data, it becomes my honor, my responsibility, my quest to tell the stories of the women you have so carefully worked to understand.

Here’s our photo diary. Check back as we’ll be adding more photos!

And now, until we begin in Nigeria, perhaps I can sleep, rather than  waking up every 20 minutes through the night. Despite the fact that these two are far tougher than me, I’ve been like a Mama Bear worried about my Cubs!