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Ending Violence Against Women | A Conversation with Dr. Denis Mukwege

Saturday, September 21, 2019, 4:00 pm - 5:30 pm

Join 2018 Nobel Peace Prize winner Dr. Denis Mukwege and Pulitzer Prize winning journalist Nicholas Kristof as they discuss the urgent need to combat sexual violence against women and girls in conflict zones.

Dr. Mukwege, a world-renowned gynecological surgeon, founded Panzi Hospital in the eastern provinces of the Democratic Republic of Congo in 1999 to provide the women in his community with access to high-quality maternal health care. Many of his first patients, however, were not delivering mothers, but instead women and girls who were seeking medical treatment following brutal rapes at the hands of warring militia groups. As the violence against women and girls escalated drastically, Dr. Mukwege and his staff at Panzi Hospital dedicated themselves to treating complex and often life-threatening gynecological injuries. Since then, Panzi Hospital has earned an impressive reputation for its best-in-class service for victims of sexual violence.

Join us as we examine why rape and torture continue to be used as weapons of war in conflicts across the globe, and learn how we can demand justice for survivors and an end to gender-based violence.


On-site parking at Grace Farms will be available. Once we have reached our capacity, overflow parking will be provided at Oakridge Common, with shuttle service running throughout the evening.


Dr. Denis Mukwege is a world-renowned gynecological surgeon who is the founder and medical director of Panzi Hospital in Bukavu, Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). He founded the hospital in 1999 to provide the women in his community with access to high-quality maternal health care. Many of his first patients, however, were not delivering mothers, but instead women who were seeking treatment following brutal rapes. This had a profound effect on his life and career, inspiring him to become an advocate against sexual violence in conflict in DRC and around the globe. 

Since 1999, Dr. Mukwege and his staff have helped to care for more than 85,000 women suffering severe gynecological trauma, including more than 55,000 survivors of sexual violence. He founded Panzi Foundation DRC in 2008 to implement a holistic healing model that combines medical treatment with psycho-social care, community-reintegration support, and access to legal services. In 2009, he co-founded Panzi Foundation USA to amplify international fundraising efforts to support the hospital and its after-care programs. 

Dr. Mukwege has been fearless in his efforts to increase protections for women and to advocate that those responsible for sexual violence be brought to justice. In addition, he has been a tireless advocate against sexual violence as a weapon of war around the globe. He co-founded the Dr. Denis Mukwege Foundation advance these efforts by connecting survivors in a worldwide movement, advocating for a system for global reparations, and expanding holistic healing to other areas of conflict. 

In 2018, he was named a co-recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize for his work to end sexual violence as a weapon of war, alongside Nadia Murad, a Yazidi survivor and advocate. In addition, he was recognized in 2018 by Bill & Melinda Gates as a “Hero in the Field,” named to the TIME Magazine 100 in 2016, and received the Sakharov Prize for Freedom of Thought from the European Parliament in 2014. He currently serves as an advisor for the G7 Advisory Committee For Gender Equality.


Nicholas D. Kristof, a columnist for The New York Times since 2001, is a two-time Pulitzer Prize winner who writes op-ed columns that appear twice a week.

After joining The New York Times in 1984, initially covering economics, he served as a Times correspondent in Los Angeles, Hong Kong, Beijing and Tokyo. He also covered presidential politics and is the author of the chapter on President George W. Bush in the reference book The Presidents. He later was Associate Managing Editor of the Times for Sunday editions.

In 1990 Mr. Kristof and his wife, Sheryl WuDunn, then also a Times journalist, won a Pulitzer Prize for their coverage of China’s Tiananmen Square democracy movement. They were the first married couple to win a Pulitzer for journalism. Mr. Kristof won a second Pulitzer in 2006, for commentary for what the judges called “his graphic, deeply reported columns that, at personal risk, focused attention on genocide in Darfur and that gave voice to the voiceless in other parts of the world.” 

Mr. Kristof has also won the George Polk Award, the Overseas Press Club award, the Michael Kelly award, the Online News Association award and the American Society of Newspaper Editors award. He has won various humanitarian awards including the Anne Frank Award, the Jan Karski award, and in 2016 was named by the U.N. as a “hero in the global campaign against violent extremism.” Mr. Kristof  was the first blogger on The New York Times website, the first to contribute a video to The Times website, and the first to file on the Times Snapchat account. He has more Twitter followers than any print reporter worldwide, and he also has large followings on Facebook and Google+ as well as a channel on YouTube. A documentary about him, “Reporter,” executive produced by Ben Affleck, aired on HBO in 2010.

In his column, Mr. Kristof was an early opponent of the Iraq war, and among the first to raise doubts about WMD in Iraq and about losing ground to the Taliban in Afghanistan. His columns have often focused on global health and poverty and he has also written often about human trafficking and women’s rights.

Mr. Kristof and Ms. WuDunn are authors of the best-selling books A Path Appears, Half the Sky, Thunder from the East, and China Wakes. Mr. Kristof has been a member of the boards of Harvard University and The American Association of Rhodes Scholars.


Saturday, September 21, 2019
4:00 pm - 5:30 pm
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365 Lukes Wood Road New Canaan, CT 06840 + Google Map

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