Humanitarian Innovation Fund Names Panzi’s and Make Music Matter’s Healing in Harmony Music Program Winner on the “Journey to Scale”

Panzi Foundation in partnership with Canadian NGO Make Music Matter, plans to expand music therapy program for survivors of sexual violence

Winnipeg, Canada (October 18, 2016) – The Panzi US partnership with Make Music Matter, and our colleagues at Panzi Foundation DRC grows stronger every day. The holistic healing model incorporates innovation and medical research with groundbreaking programs, like our “Healing in Harmony” music therapy program. Participants are survivors of sexual violence, abandoned children, vulnerable community members, and Panzi staff. Together, they are are treated as artists, not patients – and they own their music.

Executive Director Naama Haviv said, “We are honored to work with Darcy Ataman, an incredible innovator, and our dedicated and inspiring team in Bukavu. Healing in Harmony, at its core, has potential for transformational change, not just in women’s lives and in communities, but in the broader community of practice. We stand ready to work with the Humanitarian Innovation Fund on our Journey to Scale.”

It continues to be an honor to work alongside Panzi Foundations as we use the healing power of music together to help the survivors of sexual violence and embolden Dr. Mukwege’s holistic healing model.”, said Darcy Ataman, Founder and CEO, Make Music Matter.

– 30 –

For more information, please contact:

Darcy Ataman

Founder and CEO

Make Music Matter


21 April 2016

For Immediate Release

Contact: Darcy Ataman, +1 204-298-0119,


Founder and Medical Director of Panzi Hospital and Foundations, Dr. Denis Mukwege, Named to Time 100 List of Most Influential People in the World


(New York, NY) TIME named Panzi Founder, Dr. Denis Mukwege, PhD, to the 2016 TIME 100, its annual list of the 100 most influential people in the world.

The girls and women of Congo, and survivors of sexual and gender based violence in every corner of the world, have a champion. Dr. Denis Mukwege is a pioneer of medical and psychosocial healing, integrated with education and vocational training, safe transitional housing, legal assistance, and social, familial, and community reintegration.

His tireless efforts on behalf of some of the most vulnerable people in the world inspires, and informs our work with our colleagues at Panzi Hospital and Panzi Foundation DRC.

“Make Music Matter is proud to be a partner with Dr. Mukwege and Panzi Foundations for our innovative Music Therapy Program, implemented with the support of the staff at Maison Dorcas.

While Dr. Mukwege heals survivors physically we are able to work with survivors, vulnerable women, children and Panzi staff to use the healing power of music to recover psychologically, emotionally, and spiritually from traumatic past experiences” says Darcy Ataman, Make Music Matter Founder and CEO.

The full TIME 100 list and related tributes appear in the May 2 issue of TIME, available on newsstands on Friday, April 22, and now at


Follow us on Twitter @mmm_org and on Facebook at: using #PanziStrong and #FemmeForte and @TIME for updates about the list on Twitter, and Instagram using #TIME100


08 March 2016

For Immediate Release


Elizabeth Blackney, +1

Darcy Ataman, +1 204 298

Panzi Hospital and Foundations, Make Music Matter Commemorate International Women’s Day with Release of New EP featuring Guest Artist Timbuktu

(Los Angeles, CA and Winnipeg, Canada) Featuring guest artist  Timbuktu, the third album from Panzi’s groundbreaking Music Therapy Program reaches a new level of artistry, with powerful, evocative songs about women’s experiences in Congo. This new EP, “I Also Have a Dream” features four tracks, including the powerful “Mon corps n’est pas une arme,” or “My Body is Not a Weapon.”

“The artists are driving the session. With the help of Jojo and Justin, the producer and psychologist respectively, these artists are ready to go. They are engaged. They have ideas and are ready to create. It is, of course, an honor to host an artist of Timbuktu’s caliber – but more so to witness the collaboration in this community of artists.” said Darcy Ataman, Founder and CEO of Make Music Matter who recently returned from five weeks at the Panzi Hospital and Foundations’ campus in Bukavu, DRC.

Naama Haviv, Executive Director of Panzi’s US foundation said, “Music more than heals us – it helps us to heal each other. We are honored Timbuktu, along with our partners at PMU, were able to visit the music therapy program at Panzi. We’re very excited to share the music from his powerful collaboration with the artists in our program. This EP represents more than what it possible, it is an expression of restored humanity.”

Working in tandem with a trained psychologist and music producer, Panzi’s groundbreaking Music Therapy program brings together survivors of sexual violence, vulnerable community members, and children for a healing journey by writing, recording, and professionally producing songs about their experiences.

The Music Therapy program is a collaboration between Panzi Foundation USA, Panzi Foundation DRC, and Make Music Matter. We are deeply grateful to the Humanitarian Innovation Fund for its ongoing support of the program.

The copyright for all lyrics and music are held by the artists who have given the Panzi Hospital and Foundations and Make Music Matter permission to share and disseminate the songs on their behalf. The music is available on Soundcloud. Lyrics and production information may be found here, and will be provided upon request. Panzi Foundation DRC staff and information may be found here.


Interview or speaking engagement requests for Dr. Denis Mukwege, or Executive Director Naama Haviv, may be submitted via email or telephone to Elizabeth Blackney,, 541.390.1913.

Panzi Foundation USA is a 501(c)3 organization, founded in 2010 by Dr. Mukwege to build awareness and support the work of our partners, primarily the Panzi Hospital in Bukavu, DR Congo. Photography of survivors at the hospital requires special arrangements.


January 18, 2016


Vivid and Compelling, New Music Highlights Resilience and Faith

(Los Angeles, CA and Winnipeg, Canada) The Panzi Hospital and Foundations and Make Music Matter, with support from the Humanitarian Innovation Fund released the second album from their joint music therapy program today. “My Body is Not a Weapon” (français: Mon corps n’est pas une arme) presents a vivid and compelling voice for the artists who began their journey at Panzi Hospital as patients, many of whom are survivors of sexual violence.

Make Music Matter CEO Darcy Ataman said, “I am immensely excited to share the second album from our music therapy program at Panzi. We are proud to witness the patients transform into artists. Through this program we witness the inherent healing power of music.”

The title track, “My Body is Not a Weapon” features Swedish musician and rapper, Timbuktu, who spent time at Panzi Hospital and worked directly with participants in the music therapy program, and visited with Sweden’s PMU, one of Panzi’s partner organizations.

Naama Haviv, Executive Director of Panzi’s USA Foundation focused on the power of the program not only for the patients, artists, and Panzi staff but also “how the impact of this program will strengthen the fabric of families and communities.”

Haviv continued, “This program contributes significantly to results in our overall holistic healing model, as envisioned by Dr. Denis Mukwege. Medical treatments, followed by psychosocial care and innovative therapies like music therapy, and the literacy and vocational training, microfinance, legal assistance, and other components we provide, heal so much more than one person. The music from this program is more than inspiring. It’s life affirming.”

Make Music Matter’s Ataman noted the impact could be felt at community concerts held at Panzi, where the artists performed on two separate occasions. “Being in the room, witnessing their resilient strength and sharing in that moment for them as artists, reinvigorates the program and renews all our spirits.”

The copyright for all lyrics and music are held by the artists who have given the Panzi Hospital and Foundations and Make Music Matter permission to share and disseminate the songs on their behalf. The music is available on Soundcloud. Lyrics and production information may be found here, and will be provided upon request. Panzi Foundation DRC staff and information may be found here.



Elizabeth Blackney, +1 541.390.1913 ,

Make Music Matter, Darcy Ataman, +1 204 298 0119


HIF logo     panzipr

July 7, 2015


Panzi Foundation USA and Make Music Matter Collaborate at Panzi Hospital’s Maison Dorcas

Contact: Elizabeth Blackney, +1 541.390.1913
Melanie Tomsons, 902.234.2090

(LOS ANGELES, CA) Panzi Foundation USA has embarked upon an innovative music therapy program to support psychosocial healing for survivors, vulnerable community members, children, and staff with its partners at Make Music Matter. Supported with funding from the Humanitarian Innovation Fund, “Parce Que J’ai Mal,” (Because I Hurt) is the debut song from this program.

The Executive Director of Panzi Foundation USA, Naama Haviv, said “Through our partnership with the Humanitarian Innovation Fund, we are honored and excited to share the music and lyrics written by the survivors in our aftercare program at Panzi Hospital’s Maison Dorcas facility.”

She continued, “The true innovation of this program is that the women, children, and staff at Panzi are treated not as patients but as artists; creating, writing, and recording professionally-produced songs. “Parce Que J’ai Mal,” is the first of several songs that will be released, all of them powerful reflections of the healing journey our participants at Panzi have embarked upon.”

Darcy Ataman, Founder and CEO, of Make Music Matter said, “The ability of music to re-stitch the soul and deliver a message is timeless. The intersection of creativity, inspiration, and cultural change is critical to healing not only the individual but the families and communities where it is produced.

“The program is led by local Congolese producers and psychologists, working to implement this new therapeutic music model with the survivors at Maison Dorcas. Their innate resilience shines in their powerful, sincere songs. Our goal is to share their inspiring strength, and show how the greater holistic healing model envisioned by Dr. Denis Mukwege is driven by each woman.”

“Parce Que J’ai Mal” translates to ‘Because I’m in Pain.’ It is a profound expression of a survivor reckoning with the physical and psychosocial impact, and the search for a path to healing. Panzi Foundation USA and Make Music Matter produced lyric videos in English and French. The videos appear on the Panzi Foundation USA YouTube channel. MP3s and additional media are available upon request.


Lyrics in French and English below.

English Lyric Video:
French Lyric Video:

Editor’s Note: The Humanitarian Innovation Fund (HIF) is a non-profit grant making facility supporting organisations and individuals to identify, nurture and share innovative and scalable solutions to the challenges facing effective humanitarian assistance. Visit for more information.

The Humanitarian Innovation Fund is a programme managed by ELRHA (Enhancing Learning and Research for Humanitarian Assistance) and co-funded by aid from the UK Department for International Development (DFID) and the Swedish International Development Agency (SIDA).


Solange, Sandra, Pascaline, Irene

Jeune Dorcas


Tempo: 100 bpm

Key: G

French Lyrics:
1. Chaque jour de ma vie
Je me sens trahi par mon image

Chaque fois quand je me regarde
Dans un miroir Je perds espoir

Il y a tant de larmes qui ont coulés sous mes Joues chaque soir

j’ai peur du noir
J’ai peur d’être seule sur une route pavée d’imprévus

R/ Alors je me noie, noie, noie noie seul
Je me cache loin, loin de tout
Parce que j’ai peur.

2. Et souvent je voile ma souffrance par un rire ou par un sourire

Et si vous saviez combien je souffre
A cause de mes souvenirs

Je ne vois plus d’avenir
Et quand je parle de ma vie
Je ne vois que des sourds qui m’entourent

Comment oublier
comment avancer
Comment stopper tous ces viols

R/ Alors je me noie, noie, noie noie seul
Je me cache loin, loin de tout
Parce que j’ai mal.
English Lyrics:
Every day of my life
I feel betrayed by my image

Each time
When I look myself in the mirror
I lose faith

Each night
So many tears have flowed down my cheeks

I’m afraid of the dark
I’m afraid to be alone on the road
paved with the unexpected.

So I drown, drown, drown myself
I hide faraway, from
everything because I’m afraid

2. And I often buckle my suffering with a laugh or a smile

And if you knew how much I’m suffering
because of my memories

I don’t have faith in the future
and when I talk about my life,
I only feel the deafness around me

How to forget
How to move on
How to stop rapes

so I drown, drown, drown myself
I hide faraway from everything
because I’m in pain

This statement is also available in French. Interview or speaking engagement requests for Dr. Mukwege may be submitted via email or telephone to Elizabeth Blackney,, 541.390.1913. Panzi Foundation USA is a 501(c)3 organization, founded in 2010 by Dr. Denis Mukwege to build awareness, and support the work of our partners, primarily the Panzi Hospital in Bukavu, DR Congo.

Photography of survivors at the hospital requires special arrangements.

Your continued support of Dr. Mukwege, the Panzi Hospital and Foundations, the survivors and communities makes a profound difference, every day. We are grateful to share this journey with you.

Please stay tuned to our Facebook and Twitter for the latest updates.

Denis Mukwege


What follows is a statement from Dr. Denis Mukwege, Founder of the Panzi Hospital and Foundations, in his capacity as the Medical Director. The statement was read by Dr. Mukwege during a press conference at the hospital. The original French language statement is also available below.

On December 31, 2014, the staff of Reference Panzi General Hospital went on strike and took the initiative to organize a peaceful demonstration outside the building of the Directorate General of Taxes (DGI) to denounce the following:

1. The discrimination against the Hospital.

Panzi Hospital is a medical facility integrated within the health system of the Democratic Republic of Congo and holds status as a General Reference Hospital. Its employees are therefore agents of the State and, like other personnel of general reference hospitals in the DRC, income taxes on their base salaries are withheld at the source by the Finance Ministry.

Among nearly 500 General Reference Hospitals in the DRC, Panzi Hospital is the only one that has been subjected to a special income tax, a levy on the premium income they receive from the hospital. The employees complain that their hospital is the victim of a blatant discrimination by the DGI and call for tax fairness.

2. Violation of Human Rights

The Management of Panzi General Hospital of Reference is extremely concerned about this situation which leads to various violations of human rights: the right to health for the patients, including the right to life for those in need of medicines and other healthcare supplies; but also violation of the right of its employees to receive payment for their work, given that the funds seized were intended to pay the wages of employees and purchase medicine.

3. Dysfunction of the judiciary system.

The Panzi General Reference Hospital has filed a lawsuit at the Bukavu Court of Appeals against the DGI, the DRC, and the BCDC (Commercial Bank of Congo), ongoing since November 4, 2014, in connection with the abovementioned violations. The case, originally scheduled for November 18, 2014, was repeatedly postponed due first to a strike of judges, and then the death of a judge on the eve of the hearing date. The hearing has been postponed indefinitely since then.

Despite the lack of judicial decision on these matters, the DGI took action and seized Panzi General Reference Hospital’s account. With the complicity of the BCDC Bank, the DGI transferred Panzi funds to its account. This was in violation of section 127 of the Congolese Code of Civil Procedure which lists items that are not subject to seizure, including wages.

4. Irregular tax procedures.

Tax procedures have been violated by the DGI:

– In less than ten days, the DGI initiated an official tax order and two demands for payment and collection without the six month deadline provided by law;

– The DGI has not given Panzi General Reference Hospital an opportunity to contest and mount an administrative appeal.

There is an extreme urgency to act in the interest of the patients, towards whom we have the responsibility to provide the best health care services, and the Panzi staff, who are unable to receive their wages.

The Panzi Hospital Management contacted various authorities about this matter but received no satisfactory response up to this day. It remains open for all constructive dialogue with them in order to resolve this crisis.

The Panzi staff aspires towards justice in recognition of the procedural flaws that make this taxation discriminatory, and still hopes to ensure the proper operation and continuity of services provided by our public health facility.

Denis Mukwege

Medical Director.


En date du 31 décembre 2014, le personnel de l’Hôpital Général de Référence de Panzi est entré en grève et a pris l’initiative d’organiser une manifestation pacifique devant le bâtiment de la Direction Générale des Impôts (DGI) en vue de dénoncer ce qui suit :

1. La discrimination dont leur Hôpital est victime.

En effet, l’Hôpital de Panzi est une structure intégrée dans le système sanitaire de la République Démocratique du Congo (RDC) et possède le statut d’Hôpital Général de Référence (HGR). De ce fait, ses employés sont des agents de l’Etat à part entière, à l’instar du personnel d’autres HGR de la RDC qui sont soumis à un régime fiscal de prélèvement à la source par le Ministère des Finances.

Parmi près de 500 HGR que compte la RDC, l’Hôpital de Panzi est le seul soumis à une mesure fiscale particulière qui est l’impôt sur le revenu professionnel. Les agents dénoncent le fait que leur Hôpital soit victime d’une discrimination flagrante de la part de la DGI et réclament une équité fiscale.

2. Violation des droits de l’Homme.

La Direction de l’HGR/Panzi est extrêmement préoccupée par cette situation qui entraîne par voie de conséquence diverses violations des droits humains : droit à la santé pour les malades, dont le droit à la vie est mis en péril à défaut d’approvisionnement en médicaments et autres fournitures nécessaires pour prodiguer des soins, mais aussi violation du droit de ses agents à percevoir leur rémunération pour leur travail presté, étant donné que le montant saisi par la DGI était destiné à la paie des agents et à l‘approvisionnement de l’hôpital en médicaments.

3. Dysfonctionnement de l’appareil judiciaire.

L’HGR/Panzi a assigné en justice devant la Cour d’Appel de Bukavu la DGI, la Banque commerciale du Congo (BCDC), et l’Etat congolais depuis le 04 Novembre 2014 en rapport avec ces violations sus évoquées. L’affaire fixée initialement le 18 Novembre 2014 a été successivement reportée suite d’une part

à la grève des magistrats, et d’autre part suite au décès d’un magistrat de la Cour à la veille de la date d’audience. Cette dernière a été renvoyée sine die.

Malgré l’absence de décision judiciaire liée à ces dysfonctionnements, la DGI a procédé à la saisie effective du compte de l’HGR de Panzi, en violation de l’article 127 du Code de procédure civile congolais qui énumère une liste de biens qui ne sont pas susceptibles de saisie, qui inclut le salaire.

4. Vices de procédures fiscales.

La procédure fiscale prévue par les dispositions légales a été violée par la DGI :

– En moins de dix jours, elle a activé une taxation d’office, deux avis de mise en recouvrement et les commandements ; sans respect des délais de six mois prévus par la loi.

– Elle n’a pas accordé à l’HGR/Panzi la possibilité de jouir de droit d’opposition et de recours administratif.

Il y a une urgence extrême à agir, dans l’intérêt des malades dont nous avons la responsabilité d’apporter les meilleurs services de santé, et pour le personnel de Panzi, qui n’a pas pu percevoir sa rémunération.

La Direction de l’HGR/Panzi a contacté les différentes autorités impliquées sans obtenir une réponse satisfaisante à ce jour et demeure encline à entamer un dialogue constructif avec ces dernières pour sortir de cette crise.

Le personnel de Panzi aspire à voir la justice reconnaître les vices de procédure qui rendent cette imposition discriminatoire et garde l’espoir d’assurer le bon fonctionnement et la continuité des services fournis par notre structure sanitaire publique.