Democratic Republic of Congo
- Program Year
- Country of Current Residence
- City/Town of Current Residence
- Current Position
- Aide international pour l'enfance (AIPE)
- Advocacy, Children's rights, Community, Entrepreneurship (including social), Human rights
- French, English
- Interest(s) / Expertise
- activism, children's rights, poverty, street youth
Activist, advocate for street youth in his native Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and social entrepreneur, Guy participated in Equitas International’s Human Rights Training Program after his Sauvé year, and continues his work to advance the needs of the DRC’s street youth.
Guy is a member of the International Educators of Maladapted Youth Association (IEDMYA) and the African Youth Organization (OAYouth) for which he is the focal point of the DRC.
Guy pursued studies in social work, a natural choice based on his life experiences, and obtained his diploma as a social pedagogue. Later, to further develop his skills and fulfill his ambitions, he obtained project management (GYCA New-York) and leadership management certificates from Concordia University and other technical development and computer science training.
During his studies, he founded the Association of Street Children for Development, an organization bringing together people who had lived on the streets, marginalized by society, and channeling their experiences in order to help some of the approximately 20,000 youth living on Kinshasa’s streets. The organization was later renamed the Association of Young Educators for Development, but the mission remained the same: to develop activities and community projects that actively integrate youth who are living on the streets.
Leveraging his reputation amongst the youth of Kinshasa and his personal understanding of the realities of poverty and marginalization, Guy was able to engage youth in a dialogue and to develop mechanisms for their support. As Guy’s association’s impact grew, other organizations, as well as political figures, became interested in his work. Guy capitalized on this interest by creating partnerships that integrated street youth directly into state-run development programs and the democratic process. Having collaborated with the Independent electoral commission for the involvement of young street kids in the electoral process (2004-2006), she was then named the focal point of the Street youth professional reintegration in agriculture program of 2008-2012 by the Minister of Agriculture.
Guy also volunteered for Médecins du monde DRC for their HIV/AIDS and Street Children projects, consulted for Terre des Hommes Italy, and partnered with UNICEF and Save the Children to re-integrate street children into their families and advocate for their rights. Guy was involved in organizing activities for the prevention of HIV amongst the street children of Kinshasa, where he also trained educators and enabled the access to free condoms and STD treatment. As a result of this advocacy and work, he received an MTV Staying Alive grant (2008-2011) as well as a grant from the Tides Foundation through their HIV Leaders Fund 2010-2011.
Guy has participated in workshops and conferences with young leaders of Africa in Kenya, the Republic of Congo and Uganda and the US and was involved in the research and publication of three articles on the impacts of diabetes and obesity in the impoverished neighbourhoods of Kinshasa. Guy enjoys helping children and playing with them. His other passions include football, the Internet, music, and cinema.
Guy undertook a project entitled Rights, Freedom and Dignity for Street Children. This project consisted of researching best practices in social reintegration and international advocacy for the protection of the rights of street children.
While in Montreal, Guy was able to partner with several local organizations in order to learn directly about best practices in addressing street youth issues in Montreal and throughout Quebec. He gained a deep appreciation for the multiple public systems that work in tandem to prevent and to confront this challenge. He hopes to enable his native DRC to create a similar social safety net.
Guy presented his work as a Sauvé Fellow along with two other Fellows at a public event entitled “Overcoming Poverty and Promoting Human Dignity.” He reflected on what he had learned as a Scholar : « je me demandais si je pouvais réellement trouver des approches qui pouvaient être utilisés dans notre façon de travailler en RD Congo étant donné la grande différence qui existe entre le Canada et mon pays. Mais quand je me suis engagé dans des discussions avec certains acteurs sociaux ici, j’étais plus ou moins convaincu que malgré la différenciation entre les deux pays, le travail social en Amérique du nord était un modèle à suivre et la difficulté de notre part était tout simplement liée au manque d’expérience et de connaissance approfondie dans le domaine du travail social qui est encre un nouveau concept ou métier en RD Congo. »
Guy also presented on his work at the Clinton Global Initiative in Missouri in April 2013 and was a panelist at AQOCI’s Journée Mondiale contre l’exploitation des enfants in Montréal.
Over the course of his Sauvé Year, Guy launched and facilitated an issues-based discussion group for Congolese Youth living in Montreal.
In May 2015, Guy returned to Sauvé House to participate in Sauvé Encore! 2015, as part of the Foundation’s alumni outreach program.