Through advocacy, we can bring awareness of Congo's issues to U.S. legislators, citizens, corporations, and people of interest.
Here are some links of interest to help you with advocacy. We hope that you will develop a network of concerned friends at your school, synagogue, church group, and other civic and community groups.
By building networks in your circle of friends, we can help raise funds for mosquito bed nets, bring awareness of Congo, write letters to Congress, and be a part to make change happen!
Ordinary people can do extraordinary things!
"On August 1st, the BBC reported that the “Government forces and rebel troops are rearming and recruiting for conflict in the east of the Democratic Republic of Congo.” In addition, Laurent Nkunda, leader of the rebel group National Congress for the Defense of the People (CNDP) is recruiting not only in the eastern Congo, but also in Rwanda and Burundi." - AF&JN
Please visit the AF&JN link to write and ask Congress to Support Peace in the D.R. Congo.
The Enough Project has two great links regarding eastern Congo - Please take action by using this information to write or call your Senator.
The following is a direct quotation from the Enough Project and we'd like to thank them for their advocacy:
"Urgent Action Needed: Support Resource Accountability in the DR Congo
Act today! Contact your Senators to tell them that you support the Conflict Coltan and Cassiterite Act which requires greater accountability and transparency in U.S. importation of potential conflict minerals from the DR Congo. In particular, the FDLR - one of the primary perpetrators of atrocities and sexual violence against women and girls in the DR Congo - funds itself largely through the extraction of gold and cassiterite that abounds in regions under their control.
Coltan and cassiterite are minerals commonly used in household electronics such as cell-phones and computers. An overwhelming majority of the world’s coltan and cassiterite is found in the DR Congo. The sale of these minerals, however, fund the rapes, killings, and other atrocious crimes committed by groups in the DR Congo. The Conflict Coltan and Cassiterite Act calls on the President to provide a list of armed groups committing serious human rights violations in the DR Congo. The bill prohibits the importation of any product containing coltan or cassiterite from the DR Congo that would provide any financial benefit to any groups on this human rights violation list.
Contact your Senators by calling them (1-202-224-3121 9:00am–6:00pm EST, Monday through Friday), writing a letter, or sending an email requesting that they support peace in the DR Congo by voting for the Conflict Coltan and Cassiterite Act!"
And also from EnoughProject.org:
Call on Congress to Condemn Sexual Violence in DR Congo
"The DR Congo has been the epicenter of the deadliest war since World War II with 5.4 million deaths and counting. Congolese women and girls in particular bear the vicious brunt of this crisis. Sexual violence and rape exist on a scale seen no where else in the world as it is part and parcel of the conflict. Indeed, DR Congo is one of the worst places in the world to be a woman.
Introduced by Rep. Carolyn B. Maloney (D-NY) and co-sponsored by Rep. Brad Miller (D-NC), H.Res. 1227 calls on the U.S. Administration and international community to take the following actions towards addressing this issue:
• Calls on the U.S. Secretary of State to appoint a special envoy to DR Congo, and urges the U.S. government and broader international community to provide victims of sexual violence with greater assistance for health care services, psychological and social counseling, and legal advice;
• Calls on the government of DR Congo to end the widespread sexual violence by holding all armed groups accountable for their actions;
• Calls for full implementation of United Nations Security Council Resolution 1325, which calls for the protection of women and girls and the promotion of their rights.
TAKE ACTION: Urge Your Representative to Cosponsor H.Res 1227
Call Now! 1-202-224-3121
You can help stop the widespread sexual violence in DR Congo by calling your Representative (1-202-224-3121; 9:00am–6:00pm EST; Monday through Friday) and urge the following:
• Cosponsor H.Res. 1227, “Condemning Sexual Violence in the Democratic Republic of Congo.”
• Support legislative efforts to end sexual violence in DR Congo and around the world."
The following is an excerpt from CongoGlobalAction's website:
"Introduced by Congresswoman Carolyn B. Maloney (D-NY) and co-sponsored by Congressman Brad Miller (D-NC), H.Res. 1227 calls on the U.S. Administration and international community to take the following actions towards addressing this issue:
- Urges the United States Agency for International Development and international community to provide victims and potential victims of rape with greater assistance for health care services, psychological and social counseling, and legal advice;
- Calls on the government of the DRC to end the widespread sexual violence by holding all armed groups, including members of the Congolese armed forces and police, accountable for their actions;
- Calls on the UN Security Council to take immediate steps to ensure that the United Nations Peacekeeping Mission in the Congo, MONUC, is fully funded to increase troop presence and deploy in areas where sexual violence is most prevalent.
The Democratic Republic of Congo has been described as one of the worst places on earth to be a woman. Hundreds of thousands of women and girls have become victims of brutal rape, used as a tool of warfare. Please join concerned advocates around the country in ensuring that their voices are heard. We can help bring hope and peace to women in the Congo!
Please join Congo Global Action in thanking Congresswoman Maloney and Congressman Miller for bringing these atrocities to the attention of the United States Congress and demanding an end to the impunity that forces the women of Congo to live in fear.
http://www.house.gov/ to find your Member of Congress and
https://forms.house.gov/wyr/welcome.shtml to write to your Member.
To learn more about H.Res. 1227, please visit http://thomas.loc.gov/
For more information on lobby activities, including talking points, sample letters, and advocacy toolkits please visit www.congoglobalaction.org
CongoGlobalAction.org is a great resource for studies, publications, history, ideas, inspiration and advocacy Talking Points
Actions you can take to fund raise for mosquito bed nets and bring awareness to your school, church, or community group.
You can sign a petition to ask your Senators and Representatives to co-sponsor this groundbreaking piece of legislation that would give women in the developing world the tools and resources they need to lift themselves, and their families, out of poverty.
The GROWTH Act (H.R. 2965/S. 2069) is a bill that, if passed, would make the United States a leader in reducing poverty and promoting opportunities for women and families around the world.
FriendsOfTheCongo.org and CongoWeek.org
Please visit their websites for ways to advocate for Congo. Friends of the Congo is an advocacy website devoted to bringing awareness and action in support of the Congo
Links for news, reading lists, and human rights organizations
Congo Week: Friends of the Congo also offers a resourceful page with informative materials that you can download to read, share with others, and use in your classrooms.
Advocacy Tips: A great resource for advocacy. Numerous Tips include: How to work with Congress, basics of work with the media, building a group, basics of fundraising
Spin Project - Resources which include topics such as communicating, news releases, contacting media, community organizing, and strategy.
A web tool: Write letters to your elected officials and use the tool to address the email letters.
Advocacy tips from UNA-USA
Tips for Working with the Media
Digg: Visit our Digg page and vote for our articles! When a Digg news item receives a lot of votes (diggs), more people notice the article.
Scientific American: "Ending Malaria Deaths: One of the world's worst killers can be stopped soon if we make the investment"
An informative article by Jeffrey D. Sachs. An item for advocacy: "Malaria control is the bargain of the planet. A study that my colleagues and I undertook recently showed that comprehensive coverage of nets and medicines, and indoor insecticide where advisable, can be accomplished for $3 billion per year in the next few years, which equals just $3 from each person in the high-income world. Or to put it another way, the equivalent of two days of Pentagon spending could save more than a million lives per year."