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Panzi Foundation


Panzi Foundation

Healing sanctuary

In 1999, Dr. Denis Mukwege founded the Panzi Hospital in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo. The region has been devastated by war and an epidemic of sexualized violence for twenty years. Today, the Panzi Hospital serves more than 400,000 constituents in the Ibanda Health Zone.  The US based Panzi Foundation makes strategic investments at Panzi Hospital and Panzi Foundation DRC. We develop and engage in strategic advocacy to end violence against women and girls in the DRC and around the world.

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breaking news

Dr. Denis Mukwege and the Panzi Model of Medical and Holistic Healing


breaking news

Dr. Denis Mukwege and the Panzi Model of Medical and Holistic Healing


Statement of Dr. Denis Mukwege on the occasion of the International Day for the Elimination of Sexual Violence in Conflict on 19 June 2017

(Bukavu, DRC) As sexual violence continues to be committed on a large scale worldwide, today’s International Day for the Elimination of Sexual Violence in Conflict serves as a reminder that society must eradicate one of the most painful and shameful consequences of war.

In conflicts around the world, from Congo and South Sudan to Syria and Myanmar, rape is a method of warfare deployed to terrorize and destroy entire populations. Sexual violence creates life-long physical and psychological trauma, destroys family bonds, increases the spread of preventable diseases, and leaves deep and long-standing marks on entire communities.

The violence committed against the bodies of women and men, boys and girls, is the disgrace of the 21st century.

It is time to stand up and fight against these crimes at a global level. Building a global movement that prioritizes survivors, civil society members and organizations is critical to eradicate sexual violence.

Today, we also remember the victims and honour the survivors of sexual violence around the world. Their courage and strength in overcoming fear and stigmatization is a great source of inspiration.

This year’s theme of the international day, “preventing sexual violence through justice and deterrence,” raises awareness on a critical aspect in the fight against rape as a weapon of war. The prosecution of the crimes not only helps to prevent violence through deterrence. Courts also offer victims an avenue to obtain justice for and acknowledgement of their suffering.

Survivors of sexual violence are increasingly standing up to draw attention to this neglected, global problem and advocate for justice and reparations. We call on governments to become more involved and respond to their call. States have the responsibility and authority to join efforts and enforce the prohibition on the use of sexual violence.

In 2015, the United Nations General Assembly proclaimed 19 June of each year the International Day for the Elimination of Sexual Violence in Conflict

Download the statement HERE.

05 June 2017

Contact: Elizabeth Blackney
Tele: +1541.390.1913 Email:


(New York, NY) The following is a statement from Panzi Foundation USA: 

In our work with Panzi Hospital and Panzi Foundation DRC, we provide support to survivors of rape perpetrated by militias and other bad actors in eastern Congo. 

Co-Founded by Dr. Denis Mukwege with Dr. Lee Ann De Reus, Panzi USA scheduled a delegation to attend the Partners Conference in Bukavu, South Kivu province in May 2017. The visit would have marked Dr. De Reus' tenth to Panzi facilities. Our Executive Director Tony Gambino has been traveling to the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) regularly since 1979 in many capacities, including as the Mission Director for USAID in Kinshasa for three years.

The Kabila government, which continues to violate the Congolese Constitution, denied travel visas for Dr. Lee Ann De Reus and Tony Gambino.

Dr. De Reus stated: "As the Panzi Model continues to show clinical progress and benefits to families and society, we are with our colleagues every step of the way. Documenting success at Panzi, and how they overcome the many challenges presented in a conflict zone, are critical for our work."

President Kabila and his government cannot silence the voices of our colleagues and the many Congolese who want free and fair elections by denying Americans travel visas. President Kabila is well beyond his Constitutional mandate. By denying our team their visas, it only confirms the democratic space and the humanitarian space is closing in Congo.

Executive Director Tony Gambino noted: "This is yet another clear example of the Kabila government's sad decline into an autocratic defiance of all decency and respect for humanitarian norms."

Mr. Gambino is available for interviews. 


Panzi Hospital operates a mobile clinic as well as one stop centers, and has treated more than 85,864 girls and women with complex gynecological injuries, more than 50,000 of whom are survivors of sexualized violence. Founder and Medical Director Dr. Denis Mukwege, PhD created our scaleable, sustainable model of medical and holistic healing.

Internationally recognized experts in fistula repair, we understand the healing path of each individual requires much more than medical care alone. Survivors, along with other vulnerable women, have access to Panzi’s best-in-class model of holistic healing: transitional housing, therapeutic counseling, legal aid, community reintegration services and job training.