Why we created the CERBC in Ituri

For decades there was no center providing rehabilitation services for handicapped people in Northern DRC, especially in the Aru Territory and surrounding regions.

In the past, the population of Northern DRC had benefited from rehabilitaton care at Nyankunde Hospital (CME) who at the time had provided  orthopedic service, collaborating with the Community-Based Rehablitation Service (RBC) based in Bunia.  Unfortunately, wtih the multiple ethnic wars in Ituri between 1997 and 2005, both CME and RBC were destroyed by militias.

From 2008 - 2013, there was initiative in Bunia to build a rehabilitation program, unfortunately this program closed in 2013 for unknown reasons.

The disappearance of this program in Bunia has left the entire Province of Ituri without a comprehensive rehabilitation service. Additionally, the nearby Provinces of Haut-Uélé and Bas-Uelé (where no rehabilitation program has existed for decades) were in urgent need of a program to provide prevention, rehabilitation and education for people with disabilities.

In 2004, a school for children with hearing impairments was initiated in Aru with the aim of educating and training deaf children and adolescents.  Given the immense need for more general rehabilitation care, the school of the deaf (Ecole des Sourds-Muets - ESMA) had transformed into the Center for Education and Community-Based Rehabilitation (CERBC) following the unanimous decision of the General Assembly held in August 2010.  The birth of CERBC in Aru has been beneficial to serve the population of the Ituri Province and Haut-Uélé. The CERBC is located between two other Hospitals that offer orthopedic services: Heal Africa in Goma, 1100 km away in the extreme south of Aru and CoRSU in Kampala Uganda, 650 km away.