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The island of Idjwi is in the middle of Lake Kivu, in the eastern side of the Democratic Republic of Congo. In the recent conflicts that have affected the country, the island has unfortunately been used as a platform for the secret movements of different military troops for its secluded location.

On the island many services are lacking including the supply of electricity and transport. The movements of the population to and from the mainland occur mainly by pirogue, but because of its instability, many accidents and deaths for sinking and drowning happen. This leads to an extremely high mortality rate: our data shows that in a family of 5 people there is the presence of at least a widow or an orphan.

The island’s economy is based on agriculture and fishing. In particular beans, cassava, peanuts, soybeans and coffee are grown. There is also a consistent breeding of chickens, goats, turkeys and pigs. In recent years, however, the agricultural production is decreased for several reasons, including the deterioration of soil quality, poor training of the farmers, the absence of seeds and varieties that could be more resistant to diseases. Given the economic situation, many young people on the island do not have a job and career prospects.

So it is vital to promote access to education and training, which is very limited on the island especially for girls. The four parishes seek to respond to this need of the local population. In particular the Bumpeta parish, which has about 76,000 inhabitants, is very active in the management of primary and secondary schools, and for this it has received an award by the Congolese state.

AMU has initiated a project to promote the education of children and young people of the island of Idjwi. The project aims to support the parish of Bumpeta in the purchase of the equipment for the Cikoma Institute. It is a high school specialised in pedagogical and social sciences that trains future teachers of the island. The school is attended by about 900 boys and girls divided into 14 classes.

In particular, the project plans to equip the school of the 308 missing desks. Currently many students still use tree trunks as chairs and knees as desks, with the consequence of serious deterioration of the students’ posture.

The desks will be built by a Congolese carpentry and in this way the project will also help support local productive activities. The Bumpeta population participates actively in the implementation of the project and will be responsible in particular for the transportation of the desks to the island.

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€ 22.335,78