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Facts about Africa

  • Number of Countries in Africa - 54 and a couple of disputed territories (Western Sahara and Somaliland). South Sudan is Africa's newest country, officially born on July 9, 2011
  • Sub-Saharan Africa is the only region in the world where poverty has increased in the past 25 years.
  • 32 of the world’s 38 heavily indebted poor countries are in Africa.
  • Half the population of Africa lives on less than US $1 a day.
  • Slums are home to 72% of urban Africa’s citizens.
  • Primary school enrollment in African countries is among the lowest in the world.
  • 33 million primary school-aged children in Sub-Saharan Africa do not go to school. 18 million of these children are girls.
  • In Sub-Saharan Africa, only two-thirds of children who start primary school reach the final grade.
  • Although literacy rates have greatly improved in Africa over the last few decades, approximately 40% of Africans over the age of 15, and 50% of women above the age of 25 are illiterate.
  • There is an average of 40 pupils per teacher in sub-Saharan Africa, but the situation varies considerably from country to country. In many countries, it is more than 60 to one.
  • Africa loses an estimated 20,000 skilled personnel a year to developed countries.
  • Average life expectancy in Africa is only 46 years.
  • Every year 2,102,400 more children become orphans in Africa.
  • Every day 5,760 more children become orphans.
  • Liberia is estimated to have 250,000 orhpans.






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