Congo, Nov 3 2010
When the JWW fact-finding team went to Congo in November 2009, they had the opportunity to meet Dr. Denis Mukwege of Panzi Hospital, a pioneering surgeon specializing in the treatment of survivors of sexual violence. On this first incredibly eye-opening visit, the JWW team gave Dr. Mukwege one of our “Do Not Stand Idly By” pins. To our surprise and deep appreciation, Dr. Mukwege was still wearing our pin when JWW returned to Congo in March 2010. And now, with absolutely no anticipation of a visit, Dr. Mukwege was interviewed on CNN with our name and mission pinned on the pocket of his white lab coat. We take this as the highest of compliments, especially from this man for whom we have so much respect. But more than that, we could not be more grateful that our message has value to him, and speaks to his own work.
Tzivia Schwartz Getzug, JWW Executive Director and member of the second fact-finding team, made a point to ask Dr. Mukwege about his choice to wear our pin. He pointed to the pin and said the message “Do Not Stand Idly By” is what truly matters for Congo- having a community of people half-way around the world who know about the conflict in Congo and are driven to action.
This report is one of a series covering Congo. CNN has been doing the public an incredible service in recounting the mass atrocities in Congo and the response of the Congolese themselves. Take a moment to thank CNN for their recent dedication to this issue, reiterating the importance of increasing awareness about Congo’s conflict.