The Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) is one of the poorest countries in the world, with a weak and underfunded health system that is in a fragile phase of reconstruction after decades of civil war.
Although the prevalence of HIV in The Democratic Republic of Congo decreased from 0.9% in 2014 to approximately 0.8% in 2015, certain groups continue to be disproportionally at risk of acquiring HIV. In 2015, the estimated HIV prevalence rate was 8.2% among men who have sex with men (MSM) and 5.7% among sex workers.
We work with ACS/AMO Congo in the DRC to reduce the barriers that prevent MSM and sex workers from accessing HIV and other health services. ACS/AMO Congo runs a specialised sexual health clinic for MSM and sex workers, which provides an entry point to engage with MSM and sex worker groups and work with them to mobilise their communities to take advantage of the friendly services that the clinic offers.
They also support nascent MSM and sex worker-led organisations to build their capacity to engage in rights-based advocacy in order to reduce stigma and discrimination and create an enabling environment for MSM and sex workers to access HIV prevention, treatment and care services. In 2016, AMO Congo reached over a thousand people from key populations with prevention services and helped 3,732 people to cope with the consequences stigma and discrimination.
Furthermore, AMO Congo implements the Comic Relief funded project HIV, Diversity and Dignity. This project develops the organisational and technical capacity of informal MSM and sex worker-led organisations in Kinshasa to address stigma and discrimination, improve access to health services, and provide community-led care and support.