Home / Region + Country Categories  / Africa  / Central Africa  / Congo (Democratic Republic)  / DR CONGO: Displaced people offered shelter, support

DR CONGO: Displaced people offered shelter, support

Salesian missionaries are providing shelter and support for those who have been displaced by recent fighting in the Masisi territory in Sake, near Gom

Salesians respond to needs due to continuing clashes in Masisi territory


(MissionNewswire) Salesian missionaries are providing shelter and support for those who have been displaced by recent fighting in the Masisi territory in Sake, near Goma, in the east of the Democratic Republic of the Congo*. Clashes between the regular army and the rebels have intensified, causing more than 3,000 people to flee the area to seek shelter and safety.

Salesians on the ground report that the humanitarian situation is serious and risks getting worse. Bombs have fallen in Sake and shots can be heard throughout the area. The situation has left people without food or water. Due to poor hygienic conditions, people are facing cholera.

“Along the Sake-Goma road, toward Mugunga, we see children, young and old, sitting, tired, they don’t know where to go,” explained Pascal Bauma, from the Salesians of Goma Project Office. “They were displaced people who had previously set their sights on Sake. Now, following the clashes, they were forced to leave Sake and head toward Goma. This is the second time these people have had to flee for safety.”

Given the ongoing clashes in the region, there is no more space available in the refugee camps. Those who are displaced must find alternative living arrangements.

“We cannot yet estimate the number of people who have moved from Sake to Goma because the situation is ongoing,” added Bauma. “Thousands of families have been forced to leave. There are those who stayed in Shasha and Sake because they were afraid of living as a displaced person. Others stayed in Mugunga waiting for the situation to improve so they can quickly return home.”

In Goma, people who have been displaced are living in difficult conditions. Streets that allowed food supplies to be brought in are no longer accessible. If things do not change, a serious famine looms for all the inhabitants of Goma, reported the Salesians. The scarcity of some foodstuffs is already noted, and the population is living under extreme duress. The added worry is that the city will fall into the hands of the rebels.

Salesians in the region are working to provide support. There are more than 3,500 families living on the grounds of Don Bosco Ngangi. There were another 1,000 at Don Bosco Shasha until the rebels moved in. Now it is nearly empty. Salesians have also been providing food and non-food items for those displaced and dependent on humanitarian aid. Salesians have distributed corn, soy and sorghum to the children, as well as offered games, hot meals, school and medical care.

In addition, Salesians have a medical dispensary at Don Bosco Ngangi and plan to offer schooling to the displaced children and vocational training education for the older youth. The goal upcoming is to offer training for social workers on how to best help unaccompanied minors as well as economic support for families to be able to start small income-generating activities.

Salesians in the country are calling on the international community to help with donations and humanitarian aid to help alleviate the challenges the displaces have faced.



ANS Photo (usage permissions and guidelines must be requested from ANS) 

ANS – Democratic Republic of Congo – More violence in the east. Salesians at the service of the needy

Salesian Missions – Democratic Republic of the Congo

UNHCR – Democratic Republic of the Congo

*Any goods, services, or funds provided by Salesian Missions to programs located in these countries were administered in compliance with applicable laws and regulations, including sanctions administered by the U.S. Department of Treasury’s Office of Foreign Asset Control.