A chain is only as strong as its weakest link. And in Africa, where life is particularly fragile as it is, there’s no room for weak links. Due to the lack of resources and infrastructure in most African countries, the struggle for life becomes an uphill battle for the majority. If one element of the essential components for life breaks down (for instance shelter, education, sanitation, health care, nutrition) then the other elements all suffer. Children The children in Africa face a multitude of problems which directly limit their livelihood. Disease, malnutrition, lack of basic education and human displacement are but a few of the modern problems faced by millions of African children. The familiar saying, “children are the future” is truer for the children of Africa than almost any other continent.
These kids need assistance in obtaining the vital facilities to not only sustain themselves, but also their own children when the time comes. One of the main factors contributing to the everyday issues faced by children is the HIV/Aids pandemic. The disease is creating an entire generation of orphans that cannot fend for themselves, thus creating an entire generation of homeless and illiterate children. These children have very little opportunity to help themselves. Education Of course, grass roots level education and skill development would be the first steps in creating a sustainable infrastructure. At the moment, Africa simply does not have the knowledge base to cater for itself.
The illiteracy and lack of education in general is due to the lack of facilities, resources and teachers needed to create the culture of long term learning. There are currently projects in operation in Africa to increase the population levels. Developments such as mobile libraries and basic skills instructions provide the opportunity for those in need to learn to read, write and to care for themselves – but there simply aren’t enough facilities for the entire continent. Sanitation Standard sanitation is the first step to basic hygiene. Without it, sickness and disease only transmitted faster than ever before. Without sanitation, nutritional and medical care efforts are almost in vain. Diarrhoea, for instance, is a direct effect of poor sanitation and kills over 2 million people every year. This figure will only increase as the cycle continues – without sanitation, an illness such as basic as Diarrhoea cannot be successfully treated, and especially not when the figures are in the millions. Sanitation is closely linked to water supplies, irrigation and over all public health.
Decent sewerage systems require waste water to work efficiently, so without a constant water supply elementary waste disposal cannot operate. A break down in the disposal of waste can have environmental effects. Excess waste can contaminate the environment and negatively affect the agriculture of the area. Supporting the Chain Outreach for sanitation, education and the children of Africa are vitally important for the construction of a sustainable Africa. But at which point of the chain does one start? There are many projects and charities already in place who strive to create sustainable opportunities at each link in the chain.