The Kivu Assistance and Reintegration Centre

Location: Goma, Nord Kivu, Democratic Republic of Congo
Combat sport: Boxing
Focus Areas: peace building, child protection, reintegration of ex-child soldiers, education, sports and employment
Target Group: young people aged 12-29, affected by conflict and poverty
Established: 2008
Joined the FFP Alumni: 2011
Contact: Douglas Mason

The Kivu Assistance and Reintegration Centre combines out-reach and youth development programmes with a boxing club coached by the DR Congo’s Super-welterweight champion, “Kibomango”. The Kivu region has been a centre of armed conflict for two decades and remains a volatile and unstable place. Most of the project members are ex-child soldiers, and many are also orphans as a result of the conflict. Lacking the skills, opportunities and support to reintegrate successfully into their communities, they often end up living on the street, and some drift back to the militias.

KARC offers a range of activities including language, literacy and computer training, help in finding employment, individual mentoring, and family tracing and mediation to reunite young people that are disconnected from their families and communities due to conflict and disruption. The boxing club is integrated with these services and provides a platform to help the programme access young people most affected by violence, enabling them to move on from experiences of extreme trauma.

The aim of this programme is to help consolidate peace in Kivu and enable the young people they work with to acquire the skills to earn a livelihood and support themselves, live peacefully and integrate successfully in their communities and families.