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Goma women join capoeira classes to fight trauma

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Copyright © africanews
Gael Mpoyo/AFRICANEWS

DR Congo

A group of women who were affected by the volcano eruption of Mount Nyiragongo a few months ago. They do come here to participate in capoeira classes, a traditional Afro-Brazilian practice used as a psycho-social tool to reduce trauma and also help women who are vulnerable.

The courses are provided by an organization known as Gingando Pela Paz DRC, which is a Congolese rights group formed in Goma last year. The objective of this approach is also to contribute to the reconstruction of the identity of these women and to cultivate the culture of peace, dialogue and love as explained by the group coordinator Flavio Saudade.

"Capoeira is an Afro-Brazilian manifest that was developed in Brazil by Africans, over time it became an educational tool and today we use capoeira as a social technology. It really helps a person to rebuild his identity and it allows these women to be in a safe space where they can rebuild their identity and reduce trauma", he said.

For this woman in her late 30s, capoeira has allowed her to grow and rebuild psychologically after the difficult events she experienced during the volcanic eruption.

"The benefit of capoeira for me is that it helps me to grow, and love for my neighbor. It also helps me overcome tribalism. When I go for training, it helps me a lot, I play with my friends", said Furaha Judith, a participant in capoeira.

The women initiated in capoeira classes become ambassadors of peace. They often go out into the field to teach their peers about living together.