Embassy Kinshasa celebrated Independence Day with a representational reception at the Ambassador’s Residence. The reception’s guest list was focused on high-level figures in government, private sector, and civil society, as well as program alumni and members of the YALI Network. In his remarks, Ambassador Swan reiterated U.S.support for credible democratic reform, consolidation of economic and development progress, and peace and security efforts. His remarks also centered around youth leadership with the YALI program and the AF Leader’s Summit. The Ambassador was joined by Dr. Jill Biden, who also addressed the reception, highlighting the critical role that women play in the DRC’s political and economic future and drawing attention to issues of Sexual and Gender Based Violence (SGBV) in the DRC. This activity, which included press (who covered the event extensively) met Embassy goals of advancing key U.S. messages (previously delivered in country by Secretary Kerry and SEGL Feingold) to influential members of Congolese society. It was also an opportunity to draw attention, through the visit by SLOTUS, to critical challenges that women face in the DRC, including SGBV, a key Embassy goal.