Democratic Republic of Congo


people are in need of humanitarian assistance


of people in rural areas are without access to safe drinking water


are displaced from their homes

1 in 4

women experience sexual violence in their lifetime

About the Democratic Republic of Congo

The Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) has suffered from decades of civil war. Instability in the region has led to widespread poverty, accompanied by violence which has divided communities and displaced families.

Government resources are spread thin and corruption is rife. In many areas NGOs or faith communities are the service providers, where the government is absent. The constant cycle of conflict and displacement has made the instability worse. It is often the most vulnerable who suffer the most, and women and children are often targets of sexual violence.

Currently there is a fragile peace holding in the DRC. However, due to the presence of many rebel groups, fighting continues in some areas, particularly in the east, leading to an ongoing sense of instability in the region.

Meet David, our Country Director

How we do it


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Sexual and Gender-Based Violence

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Church & Community Transformation

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Our Work in the Democratic Republic of Congo

Tearfund has been working in DRC since 1986 through in-country partner organisations, and our own operational team has been working there since 2001.

The relief programme is largely based in the east of the country, in North Kivu, South Kivu and Maniema, though there are longer-term work partners across the country. The programme is currently assisting around 560,000 people.

Tearfund’s current projects include:

  • Food security – ensuring people have access to enough nutritious food all year round.
  • Educating farmers on how to improve production.
  • Disaster risk reduction activities (DRR) to strengthen a community's capacity to cope with and reduce their long-term vulnerabilities to disasters.
  • Water and sanitation provision to schools, health centres and communities.
  • Public health promotion.

Tearfund has been implementing its WASH programme in eastern DRC for a decade now. This includes emergency response work, and providing clean water and rehabilitation of water sources and sanitation infrastructure to displaced, returned and host populations. We also help poor communities gain sustainable access to safe water supplies, safe and appropriate sanitation, and to realise the benefits of good hygiene practice.

Tearfund is a global member of the SWIFT Consortium, which works to provide water, sanitation and hygiene services to people in the DRC and Kenya, and building capacity to ensure services are sustainable. This work has already reached many hundreds of thousands of people in both countries. The SWIFT consortium is now expanding to reach another 700,000 people in DRC with WASH activities. The consortium is funded with UK aid from the British people.

By supplying displaced and returned communities with seeds, tools and agricultural training, conflict-affected communities have been able to begin rebuilding their livelihoods and growing sufficient food again.

Tearfund also works with partners and church networks to tackle Sexual and Gender-Based Violence (SGBV). We work towards reducing stigma for survivors, equipping communities to support those impacted by SGBV, promoting gender justice and providing positive models of masculinity. Through churches, local faith communities and partners, Tearfund advocates for human rights, SGBV and HIV issues, as well as good governance.




people in DRC reached by Tearfund with one or more WASH services.


village savings and loans associations have helped nearly 6,000 members, including helping survivors of SGBV access medical and psychosocial support.


displaced individuals have been helped by the rehabilitation of water points and 1,200 have received emergency food assistance.


churches have engaged in church and community.

Pray for our work

  • Please pray for an end to violence and for lasting peace in DRC.
  • Pray for political and community leaders, that they may have wisdom and understanding to lead their country into a more peaceful future.
  • Pray for an end to sexual and gender-based violence in DRC, for positive relationships and healing within communities.
  • Ask God for protection, health and security for Tearfund’s staff and partners. Pray for God to strengthen them and help them work even more effectively as they deal with a vast level of need.

Stories from the DRC

  • Nigel head and shoulders

    Redeeming the river

    Nigel Harris, Tearfund’s CEO, sees a river of plastic waste in the DRC. And he meets the men and women turning some of it back into something beautiful...

    Read More

Where we're working