About us

The Dr. Denis Mukwege Foundation is an international human rights organisation, dedicated to end rape as a weapon of war worldwide.

We work with survivors from around the world to end wartime sexual violence.

Drawing attention to the most shameful crimes committed during conflicts, we envision a world in which rape as a weapon of war is no longer tolerated. Together with its special adviser, the Congolese gynaecologist and women’s rights activist Dr Denis Mukwege, we work for a future where survivors worldwide receive the holistic care they need and obtain reparations; where they have the freedom to speak out and to organise globally to end wartime sexual violence.

Through international advocacy and country-based programmes, we supports survivors in their struggle for recognition and their active participation in the development of international and national policies related to justice, peace and women’s rights.

Using music to heal at Panzi Foundation. Photo: Jeppe Schilder

The Mukwege Foundation and Panzi

Dr Denis Mukwege founded Panzi Hospital in 1999 to function as a general hospital for the surrounding community. However, as the conflict progressed and more victims of sexual violence sought care at Panzi Hospital, the focus of the hospital shifted to providing medical care to survivors of sexual violence.

In 2008, Panzi Foundation DRC was created to support the hospital and ensure the provision of other services, such as legal assistance, psycho-social support and socio-economic programmes. Together, Panzi Hospital and Foundation offer a holistic model of care for survivors of conflict-related sexual violence.

Panzi DRC’s sister organisation, the US-based Panzi Foundation USA, raises funds in the United States and makes strategic investments at Panzi Hospital and Panzi Foundation DRC.

The Mukwege Foundation collaborates with all organisations of Panzi. We support the foundation and the hospital in the DRC through fundraising and the development of international partnerships. Together with the team in the Congo, we promote the holistic model of care worldwide. Our goal is to use the outstanding expertise of Panzi DRC in working with survivors of conflict-related sexual violence to extend best-practices to other conflict-affected countries.

While the Panzi Foundations work to support victims of sexual violence specifically in Congo, the Mukwege Foundation uses a global approach to connect survivors worldwide, promote the application of holistic care, and engage influential stakeholders to advocate for an end to wartime sexual violence everywhere.

Panzi Hospital in Bukavu, which was founded by Dr Denis Mukwege in 1999.

Our board members

Special adviser: Dr Denis Mukwege

Chair of the board: Marieke van Schaik

Treasurer: Wim Jacobs, Advisor, Stichting Doen

Other board members: Julie Verhaar, Senior Director Fundraising & Engagement, Amnesty International, Ron Thiemann, Member of Board of Directors, Deltares

According to the Foundation’s policies, board members are not remunerated, but may claim compensation for reasonable expenses. The Foundation’s staff is currently employed either through a payrolling company or contracted as consultants.

Dr Denis Mukwege

Dr Denis Mukwege is a world-renowned gynaecologist and human rights activist from east Congo. He received the Nobel Peace Prize for his global efforts to end the use of rape as a weapon of war. Mukwege founded Panzi Hospital and Foundation and has become the world’s leading specialist on the treatment of wartime sexual violence.

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