Goma, Democratic Republic of the Congo: Since November 2014, I have been assigned with the United Nations Organization Stabilization Mission in the DR Congo (MONUSCO) as a United Nations Volunteer Associate Civil Affairs Officer. Civil Affairs appealed to me because it works at the most local level, with a strong emphasis on field presence. I work in the area of Protection of Civilians (POC), one of the key priorities in MONUSCOs mandate.
The UN sets aside 29 May as the International Day of United Nations Peacekeepers to honour the memory of UN peacekeepers who have lost their lives in the cause of peace. The Day is also to pay tribute to the estimated one million men and women who have served and continue to serve under the blue flag with professionalism, dedication and courage since the first UN peacekeeping mission was deployed in 1948.
The UN held a wreath-laying ceremony at its headquarters on 19 May to mark the 2016 International Day of United Nations Peacekeepers. May 29 is set aside by the General Assembly as the day to honour fallen UN peacekeepers as well as the men and women who served and continue to serve in UN peacekeeping operations. This year the theme is "Honouring Our Heroes".
Kigali, Rwanda: 19 815 is the number of peacekeepers deployed to the United Nations Organization Stabilization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (MONUSCO). Sent by 52 troop-contributing countries, contingents are deployed for a period that varies from six to eight months before being replaced with a new contingent. The deployment and repatriation of contingents take place in Entebbe, Bujumbura or Kigali, where MONUSCO has MovCon liaison offices.