Blood Minerals, Narratives from the DRC, is an audio story set in the heart of the war torn eastern Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). A photojournalist, a child soldier, and a doctor are on individual journeys which spiral together. We follow them to experience daily challenges first hand and visit villages under ambush, refugee hubs, makeshift hospitals, dense jungle canopy, enemy camps and mines.

We meet an array of characters from displaced persons to a pastor, warlords, and rebel leaders, as well as medical staff, miners, and enslaved child fighters, of which there are estimated to be around 30,000 still in existence in the DRC today, as well as every deadly disease known to mankind. This is a powerful 76 minute long tale that is split into 17 short chapters.

The voices are led by actor Paul McCann (Withnail & I, Dr. Who) as the photojournalist, and there is music from Mbwengue Star, BADI, and a special track written by Simon Le Bon (Duran Duran) and performed by singer Anna Ross.

This story was written by Dino Mahtini, a former foreign correspondent for the Financial Times and Reuters, and investigator for the UN Security Council. It is the brainchild of Marcus Bleasdale, a Grierson awarded photographer who spent more than a decade reporting on issues relating to conflict minerals in the DRC for TIME and National Geographic among others, Daniella Steadman, advertising strategist and producer, and Patrick O’Luanaigh, a leading figure in the UK Video Games industry.

Originally developed as a game, the creators feel that this story is so strong it needs to be shared with as wide an audience as possible. Please support our social media efforts and share as enthusiastically as possible.

Chapter 1: The Ambush (The Child)
Chapter 2: Arriving (The Doctor)
Chapter 3: The Refugee Camp (The Photojournalist)
Chapter 4: Rebel Life (The Child)
Chapter 5: Patients (The Doctor)
Chapter 6: Ghost Town (The Photojournalist)
Chapter 7: The Test (The Child)
Chapter 8: Displaced Life (The Doctor)
Chapter 9: The Rebels (The Photojournalist)
Chapter 10: The Mine (The Photojournalist)
Chapter 11: Blood Minerals (The Child)
Chapter 12: Interrogation (The Photojournalist)
Chapter 13: The Unwilling Wife (The Doctor)
Chapter 14: Escape (The Child)
Chapter 15: Hope (Doctor/Photojournalist)
Chapter 16: Despair (Doctor/Photojournalist)
Chapter 17: Exit (Doctor/Photojournalist)

How to help:


In real life, government and rebel factions continue to fight over and fund an on-going war through the extraction of natural and precious metals. Minerals like tin, tantalum, tungsten, and gold, can be found in everyday electronic products, mobile phones and tablets, as well as in cars, aeronautics and aeroplanes. They are all around us in building materials, and embedded into our clothes in zips and buttons.

The DRC conflict has led to the death of over six million people since 1998. This figure includes, not just soldiers, but civilians and children, and represents the highest recorded death toll since the Second World War. As a result, there are over two and a half million estimated, displaced, and left vulnerable to disease and kidnappings, with a further five hundred thousand so far, forced to flee into bordering countries.

Visit the Congo Kids Initiative to find out more and donate!

For further information please contact daniella@bloodminerals.com or Patrick@bloodminerals.com