We are trying to help Butoke with two different projects this year. The first is to open a small maternity unit in Tshimbundu. This was prompted by Butoke’s director, Dr Jean Lumbala, twice having to deliver babies in makeshift surroundings after the expectant mothers failed to make it in time to Butoke’s main clinic. We need to raise about £3500 to provide the necessary equipment for the unit.
The second is a “Justice Project”: Butoke has in the past worked to enforce the legal rights of rape survivors, widows, orphans and those accuse of witchcraft. Dr Jean has often involved himself as an informal arbitrator and legal assistance has been provided for those most in need of it. However Butoke currently has no funds to pay for legal assistance (which costs $150 to $200 per case). In addition, Butoke would like to train a network of volunteers who will gather information about rapes and other crimes to reduce the tendency of local communities to brush them under the carpet. Butoke would also like to use the same volunteers to raised awareness in local communities of how the legal rights of women, widows and orphans should be respected.
There is no fixed budget for this project at the moment. Even a relatively small amount of money would enable the programme of legal assistance to be reinstated.