The Congo Project
The Congo Project was aimed at a Pygmy community located in Tshivanga, on the outskirts of the Kahuzi-Biega National Park (KBNP).
Pygmies are an indigenous community in the DRC. When the KBNP was created in 1970, the Pygmies and other local communities were expulsed from the forest without accommodation or indemnization. Pygmies narrowly gained a chance to live at the edges of the park in other local communities without any right of the land’s ownership. This situation has created a huge life obstacle for these communities since land is the basic mean for subsistence in the area. They now rarely have access to the forest that constituted a vital area for their culture and where they could collect food, health means and shelter.
Farming is not a cultural activity for pygmies. They used to hunt and collect other natural resources in the forest for subsistence. Since they were expulsed from the forest when it gained the status of a national park, they could still hunt secretly in the protected area and exchange their forest booty against banana, beans, potatoes and other crops in the surrounding villages. It is essential that they learn how to grow their own food.