Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Life In The Congo

Just in case you were wondering what it’s like to live in the Congo, here are a few interesting facts from Africare, a leading non-profit specializing in aid to Africa, about the country where Heart of Diamonds takes place:

  • Of every 1,000 babies born alive, 205 will die before their fifth birthday in the DRC, compared to only 8 out of 1,000 in the U.S.
  • Life expectancy in the DRC is just 49 years. In the U.S., the average person lives to be 77.
  • Safe water is available to practically everyone in the U.S., but is accessible to less than half of the people of the DRC.
  • In the DRC, 76% of the men and just 55% of the women are literate. In the U.S., nearly all adults — 97% of both men and women — can read and write.
  • Annual per capita income in the U.S. is $35,750. In the DRC, it’s $650—or less than $2 per day.

Dave Donelson, author of Heart of Diamonds

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