Author(s): International Rescue Committee

Date Updated: April 2, 2014

Photo of the back of a woman's head, wearing African print fabric with French text that translates to: "The mom is as important as the dad". Military personnel appear in the background.
“The mom is as important as the dad”. Photo by MONUSCO Photos/Abel Kavanagh (cc license).

This is a backgrounder on Congolese women and girl, created by the International Rescue Committee (IRC). Refugee resettlement agencies in the United States are preparing for an increase in Congolese refugee arrivals from Tanzania, Burundi, Rwanda, Uganda, and nearby countries over the next 5 years. At least 20 percent of incoming Congolese refugees are expected to be resettled in the US under the women-at-risk category. More than half of the Congolese refugee population already in the US is female and 20 percent are single mothers.1 Congolese refugee women and girls bring specific strengths and face particular challenges in their resettlement experiences. This backgrounder draws from IRC’s Women’s Protection and Empowerment work in DRC, Burundi, Tanzania, and Uganda to speak to experiences of Congolese women and girls prior to resettlement and to provide tips for those supporting Congolese refugee women and girls in the US.

Backgrounder PDF is available in the sidebar.