SOS Children in Equatorial Guinea
Despite the exploitation of large oil reserves in the 1990s, life for most in Equatorial Guinea has not improved, and this country still ranks very near the bottom of the United Nations Human Development Index. With a population of fewer than 700,000, it is one of Africa’s smallest nations. Since the oil boom, its citizens have suffered from deteriorating health and education services.
You can help SOS Children support orphaned and abandoned children in Equatorial Guinea by sponsoring a child:
The “resources curse”
Equatorial Guinea possesses immense oil wealth, yet thousands remain without safe drinking water, causing cholera, dysentery and other waterborne diseases.
Poor public health and a dangerous political landscape
In this tiny country, 20,000 people are HIV positive and lack of awareness means that thousands more are at risk. Public health is poorly financed, with one doctor typically serving 5,000 people (compared with about one per 350 in the UK). Political turmoil is rife, and UN reports allege that opposition groups face oppression and torture – a claim the president refutes.
Children threatened by disease
- Equatorial Guinea’s infant mortality rate is 100 children per 1,000 live births. UK infant mortality for 2011 was 4 out of every 1,000.
- Although malaria rates are high, only 50% of under-fives afflicted by the disease receive anti-malarial drugs. Waterborne disease kills around 2 in 10 children.
- An estimated 45,000 children grow up without their natural parents; around 4,100 have lost their parents to AIDS.
- The number of child-lead households is growing rapidly, particularly in rural parts. Many households simply cannot afford education for their children.
- Thousands of children are in bonded or forced labour, and young girls are frequently forced into commercial sex work.
Our work in Equatorial Guinea
We began working in Equatorial Guinea in the late 1990s, when a nursery and a primary school were set up in Bata, the country's second largest city, as part of a programme to improve child welfare and the level of education.
We followed this by setting up a community in Bata which opened in 2000 on the same site, donated by the government in San Pedro de Lea, a mainly middle-class residential area about 2 km from the city centre which is well served by public transport. The community has ten family houses which are home to 100 children.
In 2001, an SOS Medical Centre was opened to provide medical care for the local people. With the capacity to treat over 2000 patients a year, the centre has a ten bed in-patient ward as well as an operating and delivery room.
Aldeas Infantiles SOS Guinea Ecuatorial
Tel: +240/222 553210
Fax: +240/333 082375