Last week, the United Nations Population Fund joined civil society groups, non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and the Government in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) to launch a campaign raising public awareness about the prevalence of sexual violence in the DRC.
The campaign will run for the next month with a number of efforts including marches, conferences, forums, school events and endeavors to popularize laws against sexual violence.
There are 1,100 rape cases reported each month in the DRC. Additionally, victims of sexual violence are often left with little to access to help. Yakin Erturk, the UN Special Rapporteur on violence against women, says not only that the justice system is in “deplorable conditions,” but that victims often have to pay access to the courts, which she describes as “a major obstacle to justice.”