|Who are the people?|
The society of Chad is predominantly rural. Scattered populations, the country’s large size, and the overwhelming prevalence of poverty have combined to hinder the development of education and health care services.
In addition, there is ongoing animosity between those who dwell in the north and residents of the southern region. This is largely a result of slave trading that occurred in the south before the French colonized Chad in the early 20th century.
Most people who live in the northern two-thirds of the country are Muslim. Arabic and French are the two official languages, but numerous African languages are also spoken.
Over the past decades, the political climate in Chad has been characterized by tension and instability with power being frequently passed from one faction to another. This has led to incredibly poor living conditions for Chadian children and families.
There is currently only one doctor for every 37,000 people in Chad. Churches often run the hospitals and health centers. Health problems are closely related to extreme poverty and a lack of health education. Diarrhea, parasitic infections, infectious diseases, and malnutrition are common ailments.
|What is it like to live there?|
Chad is a vast country wedged into the heart of sub-Saharan Africa. Its overall land area is roughly equivalent to the combined size of France, Germany, Switzerland, Austria, and Italy. Most of Chad is a large basin bordered by mountains and highlands in the north, east, and south. A vast inland sea once filled this depression, of which Lake Chad is a unique remnant.
The country has three primary climatic regions. In the arid north, vegetation is limited to scattered oases; the tropical south is characterized by woodlands and grasslands; the semi-arid middle region is comprised of drier grasslands and sparse vegetation.
The dry season typically runs from November to May, while the rainy season lasts from June to October. Lake Chad and the Shari and Logone rivers are among the richest sources of fish in Africa.
Unfortunately, years of drought, famine, and war have led to an isolated economy and a weak infrastructure. Despite the country’s large size, only one-third of the land is suitable for agriculture. With an economy based primarily on subsistence farming and raising livestock, Chad is heavily dependent on foreign aid.
World Vision is working to provide the people of Chad with the skills and resources needed to tackle the root causes of poverty and create a better future.
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