The Premio Balmis®:
Dr. Denis Mukwege

Collaborate with the project “Molinos de mi corazón”

The poverty of women in the South Kivu area of ​​the Democratic Republic of the Congo is enormous after decades of torture, rape and looting. The reconstruction of the local economy and peace in the region is a priority task.

The Rotary Club Alicante and the Rotary Club Bukavu-Mwangaza, DR Congo lead the development of an ambitious project suggested by Dr. Mukwege, in association with the Panzi Foundation and the Rotary Foundation.

The project “Molinos de mi corazón” aims to empower women, victims of sexual violence as a weapon of war, and at risk of social exclusion. These women are organized in small cooperatives (“musos”), where they help themselves and receive training. The Panzi Foundation offers 50 hectares of land. where they can grow corn and sell it at a ridiculous price outside the country.

“Molinos de mi corazon” is a local economy project that wants to add value to the product of these women with the financing of a mill, a tractor, a small warehouse, a delivery truck and agricultural training. It is estimated that 1,233 women will benefit directly, and indirectly all members of their community.

Global Grant

The needs of Democratic Republic of the Congo are sizable. Rotary Club Bukavu Mwangaza, RD Congo, and Rotary Club Alicante, Spain, are fortunate in having direct support from the renowned Dr. Mukwege, to organize a global grant to benefit a concrete project in line with aims and priorities of Rotary International.We invite Rotary clubs and districts to participate in this global grant. The Rotary Foundation (TRF) adds its support to a global grant as follows:

The Premio Balmis®

The award recalls the Alicante-born Francisco Javier Balmis, another hero in the history of medicine, who saved thousands of lives by carrying the smallpox vaccine, in the framework of the Royal Philanthropic Expedition of the Vaccine, to the Spanish overseas territories, Philippines and China at the beginning of the 19th century.

Balmis inspired Carlos Canseco, world president of Rotary (1984-1985) to launch the Polio Plus campaign. Polio will be the second disease eradicated in the world, after smallpox, thanks to the vaccine.

Currently 200 years of the death of Balmis and 10 years of the death of Canseco are celebrated.

By Torleif Svensson

The award laureate Dr Mukwege

Dr Denis Mukwege, Congolese gynecologist, defender of human rights, in particular of female victims of sexual violence used as a weapon of war, is one of the heroes in the medical profession today, renowned throughout the entire world.

  • 2019 – Peace Symposium at the International Conference of Rotary in Hamburg.
  • 2018 – Nobel Peace Prize (together with Nadia Murad).
  • 2014 – European Parliament Sakharov Award.
  • 2013 – Right Livelihood Award (Alternative Nobel Prize).
  • 2008 – United Nations Human Rights Award.


Institutional Collaborators