We greatly value our links with Ian Harvey, who works among street children in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Ian, an experienced Social Work Manager, works alongside a team of highly committed Congolese colleagues in Lubumbashi. Reasons for living on the streets are many including poverty, parental death (often to HIV/AIDS and malaria), and accusations of witchcraft. Both Junior Church (on Sundays) and St Helen’s Primary School have followed his progress eagerly.


Ian is a Mission Partner with Church Mission Society


 Since moving to DRC’s second city in 2009, Ian has developed the Kimbilio Project (kimbilio is Swahili for a place of refuge). This started as a day centre supporting up to 40 children on a daily basis, with a safe place to be, to eat, to wash, to receive health care as well as basic education and pastoral support. Following the opening of a large scale Government facility, Kimbilio moved towards family reunification and accommodation provision.Kimbilio has already supported more than 100 children and has seen 25 children return to their families. A small group of boys, who are unable to return home, are being supported with accommodation, food, education and care. In Summer 2011 they re-opened the day centre.        Some of the residents kitted out for a football match


Meanwhile they have been developing a 4 hectare site outside the city. Maison Kimbilio is a proposed children’s village and will include accommodation for children in three houses; the first should be ready to move into in Summer 2011. There are plans for schooling, training, health-care and sports, agricultural fields and staff facilities.

     <<<A brick from St Helen’s churchyard wall is laid into the foundations of Maison Kimbilio. Meanwhile one of Maison Kimbilio’s hand-made bricks has come to us, to be laid, in turn, into the foundations of our own hoped-for new building project.>>>  


We can all get up to date with Ian’s work for ourselves when he visits during his time back in the UK. If you would like to find out more about the Kimbilio Project, please visit its website where there is also a link to Ian’s blog.