Child Survival

Rwanda

History

Three main ethnic groups of Rwandans are the Hutus, Tutsis, and Twa/Pygmies. There is evidence of people living as hunter-gatherers back to 500 BCE, and farming beginning over 2,000 years ago. Rwanda was a colony of Germany in 1895 and then of Belgium in 1923. Belgium had created a system of power distribution based on ethnic identity which, caused strong tensions escalating after gaining independence in 1962. Over the next 30 years, violence and instability continued until 1944, when the President of Rwanda died in a plane crash. Hutu political leaders began a genocide against Tutsis, killing 800,000 after 100 days. The Tutsi-led RPF captured the capital, ending the genocide. Three million refugees fled to neighboring countries and 95,000 children were orphaned. The years following, Rwandans rebuild homes, hospitals, schools, and their own lives.

Some Info on Rwanda

LOCATION: Central Africa

CAPITAL: Kigali

POPULATION: 11.7 million

SIZE: Slightly smaller than Maryland

LANGUAGES: Kinyarwanda, English, and French

RELIGIONS: Christian 93.5 percent, Muslim 4.6 percent, other 1.9 percent

LIFE EXPECTANCY: 58 years

CHILD MORTALITY RATE (UNDER 5): 91 deaths /1,000 live births

ACCESS TO CLEAN WATER: 65 percent

LITERACY RATE: 71 percent

DOCTOR TO PATIENT RATIO: 1 doctor for every 50,000 people

POPULATION LIVING ON LESS THAN $1.25 DAY: 77 percent

KEY EXPORTS: Coffee, tea, and tin


(copied from source)

Denis Niyizurugero’s Story

Denis lives in Nyarubanda village, which is a two-hour walk from the nearest health center. He is the “go-to man” for families looking for health care when their children are sick. Denis is not a doctor: he’s a community elected health worker, trained by Concern to treat malaria and other basic health problems. He treats 1,000 children each year. In addition, he takes pride in helping families decide when to take children who are very sick to the hospital. “I’m very happy to be a Community Health Worker,” says Denis. “I work for the health of the community and I am trusted by them.”


(copied from source)

When it comes to child survival and public health, we have seen what it takes to make progress. We have seen a growing focus on these issues around the world. Our aim must be to help ensure that children are not just surviving, but thriving . . . We can see success, just ahead of us. Our task now is to reach out and grasp it, in hand.

—Ann M. Veneman, Executive Director of UNICEF


(copied from source)

WHAT ABOUT MOTHERS?

Child and maternal health are closely linked. Mothers who do not receive proper health care during pregnancy or who give birth in unclean conditions are at an increased risk of disease or death. Worldwide, more than half a million women die from pregnancy-related complications each year. Ninety-nine percent of these deaths occur in the developing world. Proper health care services combined with health education can dramatically reduce the risk of death among mothers.


(copied from source)

HOW MUCH WOULD IT COST TO IMPROVE CHILD HEALTH?

Insecticide-treated mosquito net .........................$5.00

Vitamin A..............................$0.04

Clean baby delivery kits.......$1.00

Immunization supply for one year......................... $17.00

Oral Rehydration Therapy.....$0.10

Measles immunization...........$0.30

Malaria drug treatment .........$1.00


(copied from source)