Grammy winner Irma Thomas, country noir singer Neko Case, and pop icon Susan Cowsill join forces with noted women singers, songwriters and poets to benefit rape victims in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Contributors include Eliza Gilkyson, Caroline Aiken, Karen Protti-Bailey, Claire Holley, Kim Carson, Theresa Davis, Mary LaSang, Ruby Rendrag, Gospel Gossip, Sonia Tetlow, Herman Put Down the Gun, Karen Garrabrant, Dede Vogt, Caroline Herring, Janet Bean, and Leilani Rivera Bond
Women singers, songwriters, and poets have donated 20 tracks for this limited edition compilation CD to raise awareness about violence against women in the Democratic Republic of Congo. \"Congo\'s Angels\" is scheduled for release during Break the Silence Congo Week, October 19-25. Congo Week is a global initiative led by students throughout the globe to raise awareness about the escalating violence against women and children in the Congo and provide support. Students and community organizers in at least 100 countries and 1,000 campuses are expected to organize an activity or event in solidarity with the people of the Congo.
All proceeds from the sale of \"Congo\'s Angels\" will go directly into a special account, designed to offer transparency in accounting. Friends of the Congo,a U.S. based tax-exempt non-profit, will manage this account. No monies, except minimal distribution costs, will be taken from sales.
Carrie Crawford, Chairperson of Friends of the Congo pledges, \"All proceeds from Congo\'s Angels will raise awareness, fund independent media, and support women and girls in the Democratic Republic of Congo.\"
CDBABY has waived their percentage of sales from Congo\'s Angels as a gesture of solidarity with Congo Week. The CD manufacturer, Oasis, has given a deep discount for the production of Congo\'s Angels. Atlanta based Earthshaking Music donated studio and production time for the mastering of Congo\'s Angels. A group of emergency room doctors in Brainerd, Minnesota donated toward the environmentally friendly packaging of Congo\'s Angels.
1.1 million people are displaced in North and South Kivu provinces and living in unspeakable conditions in refugee camps. 200,000 women and children have been raped and brutalized. It is estimated 1,200 people die every day, and it could be stopped tomorrow with enough international will say human rights groups.
Anneke van Woudenberg, the Congo specialist for Human Rights Watch, has urged independent journalists to explore the reasons behind the violence. \"Things have gotten worse in the last few months,\" she said. \"We desperately need firsthand reports of what is happening here.\"
In response to his story and the plea from Human Rights Watch, women artists from the shores of Hawaii to the banks of the Mississippi Delta immediately offered the gifts of their art and song. From a Hawaiian hula master to a Grammy-winning New Orleans soul singer, and a rising Americana singer, the compilation is a celebration of compassion, love and understanding.