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Case Studies | April 11, 2023

Strengthening Social Cohesion & Governance in the DRC

A Success Story of Catholic Relief Services and Local Church Collaboration

Since 2017, CRS has empowered communities across the Kasaï Oriental  Province of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) to talk about what divides them, uphold what unites them, and act together for stronger, healthier, and more just social ties. Witnessing the positive results of integrating social cohesion efforts into the USAID-funded development project, Budikadidi, the Bishop of Mbujimayi requested CRS’ assistance to deliver similar social cohesion support to government officials. In advance of the May 2022 elections, CRS facilitated a workshop with the Provincial Parliament in November 2021. In August 2022, CRS conducted key informant interviews with the Bishop and seven workshop participants to discover the impact of this intervention. This document describes CRS’ approach and demonstrates the transformational effectiveness of social cohesion programming to strengthen governance.