Child Sponsor Sao Tome and Principe
República Democratica de Sao Tome and Principe (R.D.S.T.P.) with its overall
population of just 163,000 is made up of the volcanic islands of Sao Tome (860 km2) and of
Principe (104 km2) as well as some small, mainly unpopulated rocky offshore
islands some 150 miles off the coast of Gabon. The island of Principe, with a population of just 5000,
has been autonomous
within this arrangement since 1995.
Following independence from Portugal on
12th July 1975 the Movement for the Liberation of Sao Tome and Principe became
the country's only allowed political party until the constitution of 1990
which allowed for multi-party elections with the country's first ever free
elections being held in 1991. As with so many
other emerging African nations, democracy was a difficult concept to bed in and
there were three coup attempts in 1995, 2003 and 2009 respectively.
Sao Tome and Principe is in 144th place out of 186 countries and territories
in 2013 when ranked in terms of life expectancy, literacy, access to knowledge
and the living standards of a country. Life expectancy is 64yrs with an
estimated 40% of the population living under the poverty line with 33% in
chronic poverty. Part of this poverty is down to the fact that many are
engaged as plantation workers reliant on the market economy to pay them
without the opportunity to grow their own crops as they possess no land to do
Until recently Sao Tome and Principe was reliant on cocoa for 95% of its exports and used
that income to buy in food given that it cannot grow enough of its own to
support its population. In recent years its cocoa output has dropped due to
droughts and mismanagement. The country is now attempting to diversify its
economy with oil exploration following recent discoveries in the Gulf of
Guinea however that is leading to political tensions with many concerned the
islands will become a dumping ground for oil waste and contamination as is
evident across the Niger Delta.
If you work with children in Sao Tome and Principe tell us about your work here. Whilst we are not aware of any current programs
to sponsor a child in Sao Tome and Principe there are
nonetheless projects working with disadvantaged children on the islands. You can help when you sponsor a child in Sao Tome and Principe.