Since our founding in 2010, we have trained more than 2,000 young leaders who have gone on to launch over 300 small businesses and community service projects that continue to improve the lives of tens of thousands of Congolese citizens.
2018 economic impact
In 2018, the Institute’s six sites trained and graduated 180 young leaders who jointly began 42 Peace & Prosperity projects, including 27 small businesses and 15 community service projects. Ranging from a water purification service, to a bakery, to a soap production company, and a cell phone charging service, these projects benefited more than 3,500 individuals across DR Congo and achieved a total profit margin of 41%.
defending Human Rights
Beyond the economic impact of our program, the ongoing actions of our graduates testify to the ability of the Leadership Institute to spark locally-driven responses to human rights abuses in DR Congo. In 2016, a group of Leadership Institute alumni in the turbulent Beni region joined forces to gather 18,500 signatures that they then sent to the United Nations to demand an end to the violence that was wreaking havoc on their communities.
Other ways in which our alumni have opposed the widespread human rights violations in the Congo include organizing youth conferences on leadership and peace in order to increase awareness of democracy and human rights, serving as whistleblowers when rebel or government forces threaten the security of people and their property, and promoting civic engagement among their fellow citizens. Most recently, one alumni of our program was instrumental in demanding the liberation of two priests who had been kidnapped in the Bashu chiefdom.