Raising awareness of the treatment of women in Congo

Reported by Gavin Johnson - bio|email
Posted by Debra Worley - email

WILMINGTON, NC (WECT) - While many may be hearing about the way women are treated in Eastern Congo for the first time, one Wilmington woman has heard about it for years.

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is in Eastern Congo demanding an end to the sexual violence against women in the country.

This is a personal issue for Robin Tabbiner who spent a year in Congo and has made several visits to the country.

Tabbiner has heard the stories first hand, from the victims themselves.

"They're really just horror stories that you hear from these women who are just standing before you left with nothing, have had family members die, have been raped countless times by ten, twenty men for months at a time - it's unbelievable," said Tabbiner.

Tabbiner is glad Clinton's visit is raising awareness and putting pressure on the Congolese government.

"I think that's incredibly important," said Tabbiner.  "Just demanding that something is done against the men who are committing these acts."

According to Tabbiner, there are many organizations and charities people can join to help.  She is involved with the Bukavu Foundation which helps women in Congo start their own business.

With Secretary Clinton drawing attention to the plight of Congolese women, Tabbiner hopes her visit isn't in vain.

Tabbiner hopes her charity will raise enough money to build a women's shelter in Congo.  She plans to visit the country again sometime next year.

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