The Central African Republic is a landlocked country in Sub-Saharan Africa with a population of about 5 million people. Since gaining independence from France in 1960, the country has been shaped by unstable governments and military conflicts, which have led to a weak economy and widespread poverty despite its rich natural ressources. Most recently, the Central African Republic has been affected by escalating violence following a military coup in 2013.
SOS Children’s Villages has been supporting children and young people without parental care, or at risk of losing it in the Central African Republic since 1992.
The University of Oxford estimates that around 80% of the population in the Central African Republic lives in poverty and approximately 55% suffer from severe poverty. That means that many people live on less than 1.90 USD a day.They struggle to fulfil the most basic needs like health, education, and access to water and sanitation.
Additionally, only 3.7% of people have access to electricity, this is one of the lowest rates in the world.
Because of the continuing violence and general insecurity in the Central African Republic, 370,000 children have been internally displaced in recent years. It is the highest level of child displacement in the country since 2014.
Many children have been separated from their families. UNICEF warns of the risks associated with this disruption of their normal lives: exposure to sexual and physical violence, recruitment by armed forces and increasing rates of malnutrition.
Because of violence and insecurity many people have to leave their homes.This causes food prices to rise and makes it hard to deliver humanitarian aid.
Many districts in the Central African Republic do not have the means to respond to children’s acute needs. Around 40% of children under five suffer from chronic malnutrition. Malnutrition rates are rising, especially among displaced populations, who lack access to essential healthcare and nutrition systems.