Ten years ago, hundreds of people – local Congolese, dignitaries, activists and supporters from across the globe – gathered in #Bukavu to celebrate the opening of the #CityOfJoy, a revolutionary leadership center for women survivors of gender violence in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
It was joyous. Filled with laughter. Brimming with hope.
Ten years later, the City of Joy is thriving, with a network of over 1500 women graduates who are transforming the very fabric of Congolese society and inspiring women everywhere. Designed by Congolese survivors, it is a place where women turn their pain into power. A place that restores women’s sense of agency over their lives as they learn real, practical life skills to feed their futures, and connects them to the global #VDay movement, one billion strong. From the return of warmth and joy into women’s lives, to a reconnection to their bodies, to the feeling of empowerment each woman feels when she masters a new skill or acquires life-changing knowledge, the City of Joy gives women a platform to transform their pasts into fuel for a revolution of the mind, body, and community.
A woman who comes through the City of Joy is forever changed by it. She laughs more, she leads more, she gives more. 10 years of joy and counting… With gratitude for everyone who made the vision of City of Joy a reality, who have been the wind at our backs. It means the world to us.
Join us. Support us. Follow us.
#VDay #1BillionRising #RiseResistUnite #RiseInSolidarity #UntilTheViolenceStops #TurningPainToPower
V-Day is proud to announce that Netflix will be releasing the documentary film City of Joy on 7 September for viewers around the world to see. Here’s the new trailer:
The buzz about the film is just beginning:
“… you’ll want to check out the new Netflix documentary City of Joy, the trailer for which can be seen [above]. The upcoming film, out 7 September, is centered around the City of Joy community in the eastern region of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, which helps women who have experienced rape and torture due to war in the area rehabilitate their lives and become leaders in their community. In addition to the women who are living at City of Joy, subjects of the documentary include the community’s founders: Congolese-Belgian women’s rights activist Christine Schuler Deschryver, Congolese gynecologist and Nobel Peace Prize nominee Dr. Denis Mukwege, and American playwright and feminist activist Eve Ensler (of The Vagina Monologues fame).” – Bustle
“Netflix Just Dropped The Trailer For This Year’s Most Powerful Doco” – Whimn
The award-winning film takes the audience on an intimate and inspiring journey. Since opening its doors, over 1100 women have graduated from the City of Joy, women who have healed themselves, been nurtured, learned new skills, empowered themselves and together joined into a network of love and revolution.
We believe that EVERYONE should see this film, as it demonstrates a guiding principle of the V-Day movement – that pain can be turned to power, and can fuel inner and societal revolution. Through the film, millions of people across Netflix’s 190 country network will come to know the stories of Congolese women and the work at City of Joy.
Stay tuned for house party info, memes and graphics to spread the word, and more!
#Netflix #CityOfJoy #TurningPainIntoPower #UntilTheViolenceStops #ThisIsV20
In May, GRITtv with Laura Flanders spoke with V-Day Congo Director/Director of City of Joy Christine Schuler Deschryver about the City of Joy and V-World Farm, and how both works to create women leaders in the DRC who are doing everything from starting their own projects to running for office.
On 13 May 2014, Christine Schuler Deschryver and Eve Ensler sat down for a special RISE4JUSTICE conversation at ABC Carpet & Home in NYC.
The evening offered activists in the NYC area, and many more watching online throughout the world, the opportunity to hear about the situation facing women and girls in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and what the City of Joy and V-World Farm are doing to end the violence.
In her TEDxTalk, Emily Scott Pottruck takes us through how she found her personal philosophy for meaningful engagement. She takes you on her journey from her Northern California home to City of Joy in the Congo.
Program Director Marie-Jeanne Bachu Bahati Nyenyezi describes her approach to empowering the women at City of Joy to become fierce leaders. “For me the great discovery is to realize that the Congolese women, despite their low familial status, if they are given good trainers who teach them to know and defend their rights, to get self confidence and learn how to make things in order to earn their lives, they can do anything.”
V-Day Congo and City of Joy Director Christine Schuler Deschryver’s reflects on the simple yet profound motivation for her work here: “City of Joy is a community, a place where love lives. Everything is based on love, and I think that’s the only way you can change the world.”