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We want to use all the gifts and support we receive on our two projects.
- The schoolproject and the sewingproject


Congo is among the countries in the world where parents have to pay for their children to be able to go to school. For those who have funds, this is fine. But since most people do not even have enough money for food, giving children schooling is almost a utopia.


Children who are the result of rape, prostitution or who have lost their parents for other reasons are in a very difficult position. They are not visible in the environment. They have no resources and a great deal of local knowledge is required to find them. This is where Perle Noire is different from other aid organizations.

Perle Noire in Congo knows the landscape, and knows where the most disadvantaged children are. These were the children Jessica's mother and father tried to help. And when she founded Perle Noire, it was first and foremost this kind of work she wanted to continue. It is important that girls and boys have equal opportunities. Therefore, it is important that there are an equal number of children of each sex. And the interesting thing is that all the Perle Noire children do well at school, but the girls do the very best. They have been given a unique opportunity for girls in Congo, and do their part to prove themselves worthy of trust.


The first student to finish high school was a boy. He is very intelligent and among the school's best students. We want to help him with further education. He has great ambitions to become something that can help Congo to become a better country for young and old.

The thoughts behind the help Perle Noire provides in Bukavu are thoughts that many in Norway and most places in the world share about children's right to education. The Nobel Peace Prize winners in 2014, Malala Yousafzai and Kailash Satyarthi, were awarded the prize "for their fight against the oppression of children and young people and for all children's right to education".


Perle Noire helps the children of Bukavu in Congo with this.


Some women in Bukavu, like Jessica's family, are concerned about caring for children with severe difficulties. Several of the Perle Noire children are helped by such women. They do not have finances themselves, and often many children. Despite this, they care for disadvantaged children.


Perle Noire started the Sewing Project, among other things, to help such women, but soon discovered a more important goal. The opportunity for teenage mothers in Bukavu, some with up to three children, is minimal. The children may be the result of a rape or the mother's work as a prostitute. The children are often not wanted, mostly because the mothers have no income.

The sewing project aims to find teenagers with a great need for help, and with a great willingness to get out of what they do today. The project gives the girls half a year of sewing training by professional instructors. When the training is over, the girls keep the sewing machine they have learned to sew on.

They also receive a publicly approved document showing that they have been trained by Perle Noire. In other words, they are able to earn a living. Their social status is rising, after all there is a difference between a prostitute and an educated seamstress with their own production.


The president of Perle Noire in Bukavu has interviewed many of the southern ladies. They tell about their lives before and after Perle Noire. None of the girls have been back in their previous environment, they can make a living from the production they do. Since the economy of the southern women has improved, the closeness to the children has improved.

When the children become old enough to start school, they expect to be able to pay school fees for themselves. The cost of giving a teenager this training, starter kits to get started and a sewing machine, is NOK. 3 000, -. This is also about helping the girls where they belong. Perle Noire follows them up, sees how they are doing, motivates and gives ideas.


Even more important is that all the Perle Noire seamstresses have formed a community where they help each other and support each other. They have become an important social group. As an "exam paper", the students sew new uniforms for the Perle Noire students. It is mandatory in Congo that you have a special type of uniform to go to school. This has become a win-win situation. And that the social network works is clear when many of the former sewing students help.


Three such trainings have been completed. Perle Noire wants to continue, and it is the economy that prevents us from starting a new project. If you feel that you would like to support this work, you are very welcome.

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