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Yaoleka is a forest village located at the centre of the Opala group of villages in the Eastern Province of the Democratic Republic of Congo. People here urgently need basic healthcare facilities, including a maternity unit. The effects of war and poor governance are evident in the present war-damaged, crumbling health centre and the complete absence of maternity care. Mother and infant mortality rates are extremely high even by DRC standards. Against this background, the diocese of Isangi has asked the Oblates to take on responsibility for developing basic healthcare facilities in the region.
Consultations have shown that people are crying out for services which will improve public health, and provide a unit where babies can be delivered safely, and where pre-natal and post-natal care can be offered to both mothers and babies.
But first the community at Yaoleka must find a way to build a new health centre with a maternity wing. The price tag will be over €100,000. Today, civil society in this poorly governed, long-suffering land is growing in strength and people at every level are working to change their society for the better. We hope that with the assistance of grant aid from Ireland this vital healthcare project can get underway very early in 2011