When Dr. Mukwege, chief surgeon at Panzi Hospital, asked me in 2009 to help him start a foundation in the US, to support initiatives of the hospital, little did I know such an incredible journey would unfold! It is a privilege to do this work, along with co-founder/executive director Peter Frantz, and all the generous, caring people who have joined our efforts to help women in the DR Congo.
The purpose of Panzi Foundation USA is to help survivors of sexual violence heal, live, hope.
How they heal – Women who come to Panzi hospital receive life-saving treatment for their injuries due to sexualized violence.
How they live – The Maison Dorcas transit/safe house provides literacy and vocational training for women still under medical care or who have no place to go due to abandonment.
How they hope – Despite severe trauma, the women of Panzi hospital maintain hope for the future. Panzi Foundation USA helps foster that confidence through support of Panzi’s many programs. Want to make a difference? Visit www.panzifoundation.org.
© Lee Ann De Reus and leeanndereus.com, 2012