YALI Network in Bukavu rehabs prison and inspires inmates to mark Mandela Day

YALI Alumni repainting the prison walls. (State Dept. Images)

To celebrate Mandela Day, a group of 30 youth led by Mandela Washington Fellows and YALI East Africa Regional Leadership Center alumni, painted walls and visited 50 inmates at Bukavu prison in South Kivu on July 18, 2017. The volunteers also brought food for the inmates, who were mostly youth aged 12 to 17. The exchange alumni discussed Nelson Mandela’s prison experience and how he used it to achieve greatness upon his release. After the presentation, one young inmate told the group “once out of prison, I promise to pursue my studies and will one day Minister of Justice.” The 50 youth were crammed in two small bedrooms without mattresses. Inmates in DRC are often insufficiently fed.