Riccardi Andrea: on the web

Riccardi Andrea: on social networks

Riccardi Andrea: press review

change language
you are in: home - news contacting usnewsletterlink

Support the Community

  
August 3 2013

Life in a Kivu’s prison

A prisoner’s speech, on the occasion of the President of the Community’s visit, tells the dramatic situation of the prisoners

 
printable version

During the meeting of the youth of Kivu, which took place in Bukavu from 18 to 19 of last July, President of the Community of Sant'Egidio Marco Impagliazzo, with a delegation, visited the central prison of the city, where the community has performed a service of weekly visits for 6 years, in the minors’ section. Most of the detainees are street children, picked up by the police during raids to "clean up" the city, and they are not guilty of any other fault but their extreme poverty.

On behalf of all, a young detainee received the visit with a speech to the Community and to the world "outside", in which he described the dramatic situation in which they live:

“Dear Marco, dear friends of the Community of Sant'Egidio, on behalf of all the minors in the central prison of Bukavu, we welcome you. Today the world considers us as unrecoverable people, who can no longer change and for whom the only solution is prison. The prison strikes us on the psychological, physical and social levels, since most of us lack a support and the means to defend ourselves. Our societies have built prisons, but they ignore how life is inside them, that is, what happens, the kind of life the prisoners live, how they eat and where they sleep.

We thank the Community of Sant'Egidio for the various activities that allow us to continue dreaming, and thank you especially for the Christmas lunch. It is true, the friends of the community say they have "neither gold nor silver, but only the Word of the Lord" and the love that they bring us humanises us, and I myself, who speak to you, am a fruit of that love.

Certainly the needs for the minors in prison are numerous despite the presence of the Community and let me list the main ones:

Food is insufficient; if we get sick, only nature takes care of us, because there are very few medicines, we have neither recreational nor educational activities.

To achieve our dreams of reintegrating into society and humanising our lives, we ask: Adequate medical and nutritional care, literacy and vocational training to be done in the prison itself, a recreational space with the showing of films and games.  

We tell you again thank you for your presence amongst us and we assure you and the whole Community of our prayers.”

On the occasion of this visit, it was possible to review the dossier of 5 imprisoned children and, with the payment of a deposit, they could return to their families.

 6 years of friendship with the young prisoners


The prison of Bukavu is an old colonial building, built by the Belgians in the early 20th century. It was designed to accommodate 300 inmates, today there are more than 1500, in very precarious conditions. The first times we went there, we realised that one of the main problems was the living conditions in total promiscuity, the decay of the environment, the health conditions of many prisoners who had not accessed to any medicine. A first idea was to separate the boys under 18 years of age in a different area, complying with a provision that the Congolese law itself provides.

From having obtained the recognition of this right, a more personal friendship started, in particular with the youngest inmates. Amongst the questions that were addressed to us, the first one was to speak to them about the Bible and the prayer, then to give some advice on hygiene and health care, to provide soaps and some literacy for out-of-school children, who are those that come from the countryside.

Many of them are street children who we had met and followed up even before they entered prison. Even if they have not committed any particular crime, they can fall into the "raids" of the police, who, unfortunately, regularly decide to "clean up" the city of beggars. The Community has officially protested in an open letter regarding these practices, and chose to help the street children by finding them housing and providing the support for the courses of professional integration. After prison, friendship does not end and the Community is committed to seeking a better future for the youth of the city.


 ALSO READ
• NEWS
December 7 2016
LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM

In London there is a table ready for the poor: it's called ''Our Cup of Tea''. The video by BBC

IT | EN | DE | FR | PT | HU
November 7 2016

When violence is met with forgiveness, even the hearts of those who have done wrong can be conquered by the love

IT | EN | ES | DE | FR | PT
September 30 2016
BLANTYRE, MALAWI

Thirst for Peace: the public role of young people for peace, dialogue and development

IT | EN | ES | FR | ID
September 1 2016

September 1st, memory of Saint Egidio. The Community that took his name give thanks in every part of the world

IT | EN | ES | DE | FR | PT | CA
July 2 2016
GOMA, DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF THE CONGO

Education is a right for all: the children of the School of Peace of the refugee camp of Mugunga "draw" it

IT | EN | ES | DE | FR | PT | HU
April 23 2016
LVIV, UKRAINE

Ukraine: The Forum of Solidarity of the Youth for Peace in Lviv

IT | EN | ES | DE | FR | PT | RU | UK
all news
• PRESS
November 24 2016
Radio Vaticana

Sant'Egidio presenta riforme per umanizzazione delle carceri

November 23 2016
Notizie Italia News

Fatti: Un giovane della periferia africana ci insegna a non essere schiavi del denaro

November 19 2016
RP ONLINE

Amerikanischer Traum endet in der Todeszelle

November 16 2016
Radio Vaticana

Marazziti: grati a Francesco, non c'è pena giusta senza speranza

October 14 2016
Avvenire

Sant'Egidio Camerun, a Douala aperta la Porta Santa mobile dei detenuti

October 7 2016
ASCA

Comunità di Sant'Egidio: nessuno è vaccinato contro la povertà

all press releases
• EVENTI
November 28 2016 | ROME, ITALY

Oggi si parla di carcere: trasmissione da Regina Coeli su Rai News 24 con Gianfranco Ravasi, Mario Marazziti e altri.

November 23 2016

Migranti: il Premio Galileo 2000 alla Comunità di Sant'Egidio

All meetings of prayer for peace
• DOCUMENTS

Dove Napoli 2015

Comunità di Sant'Egidio: Brochure Viva gli Anziani

Analisi dei risultati e dei costi del programma "Viva gli Anziani"

I Numeri del programma "Viva gli Anziani"

Messaggio del Patriarca ecumenico Bartolomeo I, inviato al Summit Intercristiano di Bari 2015

Marco Impagliazzo

Saluto di Marco Impagliazzo alla liturgia di ringraziamento per il 47° anniversario della Comunità di Sant’Egidio

all documents
• BOOKS

Elogio dei poveri





Francesco Mondadori

Il martirio degli armeni





La Scuola
all books

PHOTOS

982 visits

904 visits
all the related media

Per Natale, regala il Natale! Aiutaci a preparare un vero pranzo in famiglia per i nostri amici più poveri