Discover The Journey

Preventing HIV in DRC

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Today is World AIDS Day. And yet this disease that has claimed the lives of millions can be prevented. In March DTJ travelled to DRC to document the work of Global Strategies, an organization working to prevent the transmission of HIV from mother to child through their partner organization, Heal Africa. DTJ witnessed mothers living with HIV experience the gift of their children being HIV negative. In a nation with little support to assist those living with the disease, this is often the difference between life and death. Take a look at what Global Strategies is doing in DRC and hear the stories of the mothers who prove it.

Reportage: Let the World Know

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DTJ presents our first Reportage piece profiling Sister Giovanna, a Camboni nun who lives in Nzara, South Sudan and serves her community who has survived LRA violence. Sister Giovanna has lived through two decades of violence committed by the LRA, first in Uganda and now in South Sudan. Just yesterday, Senator Inhofe read a letter from Sister Giovanna to the Senate, describing in detail the horror of the LRA, coming on the heels of President Obama’s recent decision to send 100 US advisers to the region to address the ongoing violence and stop Joseph Kony, the leader of the LRA.

Special thanks to the team at Resolve and all of their hard work to make not only the recent news from President Obama possible but their partnership with DTJ to travel to LRA affected regions and document stories like this.

DTJ Communiqué N° 002

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DTJ went to eastern DR Congo in March to film the work of Global Strategies and their prevention of HIV through Heal Africa and to continue rehabilitation and reintegration work with former child soldiers in DTJs program. DTJ also had the privilege of holding preliminary conversations developing a new DTJ initiative called Mobile Cinema in DRC.

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FARDC soldiers walk between Ishasha and Rutshuru, North Kivu

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Rain storm returning from Ishasha to Rutshuru.

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Kiwanja, North Kivu

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A mother and her child, Binza, North Kivu

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A clinic in Ishasha where women come to receive maternal health care, the only one in the area.

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Ushindi, Heal Africa, Goma

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Merveille and her little brother, Heal Africa, Goma

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Rutshuru, North Kivu

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Women in a support group at Heal Africa. Goma, DRC.

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Lake Kivu, Goma, North Kivu

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To Binza, North Kivu to see a rural health care program run by Global Strategies through Heal Africa that addresses prevention of mother to child transmission of HIV.

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A woman recounts her story. Heal Africa, Goma, DRC.

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On the road to Rutshuru, North Kivu, DRC.

Photographs taken by Jonathan Olinger and Lindsay Branham

DTJ Communiqué N° 001

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In January DTJ screened a short film we directed, shot and produced called “Let us Be Free: A Plea for Relief from the LRA” at a Congressional Briefing in Washington, D.C. hosted by Human Rights Watch and Resolve. Our film served to advocate directly to US Congressmen and senior staff to implement the LRA Disarmament and Northern Uganda Recovery Act, signed in 2009 by President Obama. DTJ’s media was screened alongside the talented photojournalist Marcus Bleasdale who recently chronicled the LRA crisis in Central Africa with the Pulitzer Center.

DTJ partnered with Resolve, an advocacy organization based in D.C., committed to seeing the end of the LRA’s atrocities in Central Africa. This unique partnership allowed us to travel to Sudan in 2010 and be on the ground in Western Equatoria, a remote part of Sudan, where people from DR Congo, Central African Republic and Sudan have all fled from LRA attacks. We interviewed Congolese children who had been abducted by the LRA, mothers who had lost their children to the LRA, men who showed us in a few handfuls, the food they had that was expected to last for the next two months. We asked them if they could say something to the US Government or to the American people, what they would say. With bravery, people explained how they want peace.

Photograph by Lindsay Branham of young boy who recently escaped from the LRA in Yambio, Southern Sudan.