Africa

Partnering with Africans who are making things happen

Africa is a continent that challenges our consciences, and yet offers great opportunities.

Africa has had:

  • 450 years of appalling slave trade
  • 110 years of colonial rule followed by “strong-man” despotism and corruption
  • Irresponsible lending / borrowing creating an unbearable debt burden

The Outcome of this has been:

  • Abject poverty actually on the increase
  • Life expectancy as low as 38 years
  • 20 million refugees / Starvation – famine
  • 30 million orphans & street children

There IS something we can do about it !


Three Key Issues:

 

1. Education

Whereas almost 60% of sub-Sahara African children are enrolled in Primary School, less than 25% are enrolled in Secondary School. Why? Because state secondary schools charge fees ranging from £50 to £200 per year
Time and time again we found that this was one of the greatest frustrations and obstacles for young Africans to succeed. The Secondary school net enrolment ratio in 2002/03 was 24.7% for West and Central Africa and only 23.2% for Eastern and Southern Africa.

Kenyan Primary School children
Some of the “lucky” Kenyan Secondary School children

2. Orphans
Of the 150 million children in sub-Saharan Africa, it is estimated that 30 million are orphans! Many live with destitute widowed mothers or grand-mothers.

What’s causing this?
The AIDS pandemic is now the major contributor – it is decimating the working population of Africa. In Botswana, 36% of all adults are infected with HIV/AIDS… Life expectancy has fallen from 61 to 39 in the last 7 years

Orphans

  • unable to finance education
  • many end up on the streets
  • caught in a vicious cycle

A typical Christian family will care for a large number of orphans and widows.

3. Malnutrition

More than 30% of sub-Saharan Africans suffer
the highest nutritional deficits in the world.

Some Crude Realities :

  • 30% of food grown in the UK is dumped
  • Now as many people over- nourished (BMI) as under-nourished in the world
  • 80% of sub-Saharan Africans are farmers, but they are unable to feed themselves

What’s happened ?

  • Archaic farming methods on small family holdings
  • No crop rotation, frequent drought, lack of irrigation
  • Many farming families headed by the elderly and sick
  • No money to invest in seed or fertilisers
  • War and displacement

Next (about Malawi) >