Raise Hope for Congo was a campaign of the Enough Project launched in 2008 which worked to build a constituency of activists to advocate for an end to the ongoing conflict in eastern Congo. We need the full force of our activist base behind us to ensure this new approach is successful, so we combined the Raise Hope for Congo campaign back into the full Enough Project constituency base in order to amplify our efforts.
The campaign collaborated with national and local groups across the U.S., as well as local Congolese organizations, to build this grassroots movement.
Raise Hope for Congo focused on educating activists and their communities about the conflict in eastern Congo, the role of conflict minerals funding the conflict, and the effects of sexual violence as a weapon of war used against Congolese women and girls.
Together with the leadership of a few key companies, legislators, and a number of Congolese and international activists, Raise Hope for Congo helped transform the supply chains of the world’s leading electronics companies to weed out conflict minerals and help build a conflict-free minerals trade in Congo; partnered with Maman Shujaa, the Hero Women of Congo, to successfully have former Senator Russ Feingold appointed as the highest-level U.S. Special Envoy to Congo and the Great Lakes Region, and maintained the pressure needed to ensure his successor, former Congressman Tom Perriello, was appointed; and presented at the United Nations alongside Ambassador Samantha Power and actor and activist Robin Wright on the linkages between conflict and sexual- and gender-based violence.
Beginning in 2015, the Enough Project broadened our efforts to focus on what we believe to be the real underlying cause of conflict in Congo and other conflicts in East and Central Africa: grand corruption linked to violence that manifests in a system of violent kleptocracy. This shift was informed by our work on addressing the conflict minerals crisis in Congo, and there is still much to be done to combat the conflict gold trade, impunity, and kleptocracy in Congo and to support the Congolese reformers calling for change.