Congo Kinsasha

January 2021

Q&A with Dr. Eddy Gyessy, National President

Dr Eddy GYESSYNational President

1. Why is the work of the Blue Cross important to you?

Because this work allows me to save lives by firstly ensuring prevention by providing the right information, because I believe "it is easier to avoid when you are well informed and harder to stop when you have started" and secondly by helping those who have already started, whether dependent or not, to stop.

2. Are you convinced of the impact of your work – if so, which aspects?

Yes, we receive testimonies from people who, thanks to our intervention and advice, have been able to stop drinking or smoking. In addition, parents are questioned by their children about alcohol and tobacco addiction, and they benefit from our awareness and training days in schools.
And at the national level, we participated in a project that led to the framework law on public health related to tobacco and alcohol and this project was funded by CTFK through an ACCT (Alliance Congolaise de Lutte contre le Tabac) platform of which we are a founding member and responsible for finance. This law ushers in a new era in the fight against alcoholism and smoking in DR Congo.

3. What was your happiest moment during your time with Blue Cross?

The happiest moment was the inauguration of the Addictology Centre in Kinshasa, which is a first in our country and represents a structure that enables us to achieve our objectives.

4. What is/was your biggest challenge in your work for Blue Cross?

Our biggest challenge is presently to ensure more effective care for addicts, which means expanding and equipping the centre, building staff capacity and raising awareness in our communities that alcoholism, smoking and other addictions are diseases that must and can be cured.

5. Blue Cross in your country: What do you consider your most important project?

It is the project to expand the Addictology Centre in Kinshasa, as well as equipping it and strengthening the capacity of its staff. A project for which we are still looking for funding.