November 25, 2012

Afri-Culture Interview With: Miss AfriCanada 2012, Christine Kitoko

I recently had an interview with Raïssa Nkuba, the editor of Afri-Culture Magazine (who is also Congolese, if I may add), in which I got to answer some pretty thought-provoking questions. Check out the full article by clicking the following link: Afri-Culture Interview With: Miss AfriCanada 2012, Christine Kitoko

November 10, 2012

A Night for Change, A Night for the Congo 2012

Me with mom and dad. I love them more than anything else in this world, and they supported me more than anyone in all of this. God bless them.
So I'm finally finding time to write a new entry about my recently held fundraiser, great. As you all know, "A Night for change, A night for Congo" was to raise awareness about gender-based violence in eastern Congo, and to raise funds for Panzi Hopsital in Bukavu. And I can confidently say that both goals were accomplished with success. In terms of donations, we received over $700 worth of money for the cause, and plenty of people congratulated me afterwards; saying that they had learned so much about the issue at hand. And quite honestly, I must say that I am very proud of myself. I remember all the stress and disappointments and discouragement I felt during the planning of this event, to the point that I wanted to abandon the idea several times. It was a lot of sweat and tears (literally) that went into turning this vision into a reality, and I feel so blessed that God gave me the perseverance to see it through, with my parents who were constantly behind me. I also learned very many things in terms of the complexity of planning an event, and I can assure you that I won't be repeating my mistakes. Quite frankly, a lot of people disappointed me throughout this journey; people who said that they were going to help out or show-up, and that never did, or the troubles I faced in finding an actual venue etc... The letdowns and the difficulties sucked big-time. However, at least now I've established a solid network of those who I can trust and depend on for the future, and I've learned that you definitely have to plan these things in advance and not while you're in school! Otherwise, the night of the fundraiser went very well. My performers did a very good job, the DJ was on point, the vendors had nice things on display, and the audience was very responsive. Not to mention all the other supporters such as the sponsors, and my family and friends, they were amazing. Therefore, I'm just glad that amid all the stress (emphasis on that!!!) I felt that night (like having 2 missing performers, for example), no one besides me noticed anything wrong, and everyone enjoyed themselves.

With that being said and done, I'm definitely taking a little break from all things Congo related for a short while, so I can just re-catch my breath and make-up for my lack of focus on school things lately! However, I will never lose my passion for the cause of helping Congolese people, because it is truly and honestly something I love doing with all of my heart. Social injustice is a very unfortunate thing, but God has also given us the ability to love each other, and it's the only real "weapon" we can use to combat injustice. Furthermore, since love can be manifested in many different ways, I encourage all people to find ways to bring it to others, especially through social activism.