“It’s with great joy and pride that Doctors of the World received the news that the Nobel Peace Prize has been awarded to Doctor Mukwege and Nadia Murad. This award recognizes the horrendous agony of countless victims of sexual violence in Congo. Doctors of the World has been working together with Dr. Mukwege in Bukavu since 2015, coordinating the medical aspects of the Sexual Survivors Project in Mukwege’s Panzi Hospital. Throughout this partnership, an average of 170 women a month receive medical treatment and surgery.”
“Dr. Denis Mukwege was in the surgery block when the news came in, operating victim of sexual violence”, says Eric Wijnants, Coordinator of Doctors of the World, based in Bukavu.” This anecdote says everything about him – even winning a Nobel prize doesn’t stop him from doing his number one priority in life – healing and protecting survivors of sexual violence.”
“All of us – his partners, other NGOs, the doctors, the midwives, psychologists and lawyers – are one big team with Dr. Mukwege in the center, mobilizing all of us in his fight against sexual violence. As a partner, we are extremely proud to be working on his side on the field“, says Pierre Verbeeren, Director of Doctors of the World Belgium.
After founding the Panzi Hospital in 99’, Mukwege was increasingly being confronted with the horrors of the sexual violence that were being used as a weapon of war in the region: countless of women, genitally and sexually mutilated by armed militias seeked his help. Dr Mukwege, profoundly touched and agonized of what he witnessed, decided at that point to dedicate his life to the recovery of the survivors of rape in Bukavu.
Almost 20 years later, the Panzi hospital has become a reference for the physical, psychological and social recovery of women and girls who have been sexually mutilated.