Swaziland is one of Africa's smallest countries, with 1.3 million people living in an area about the size of New Jersey. Africa's last kingdom, Swaziland is a lower middle-income country with an excellent infrastructure. Income distribution is extremely unequal, however. Almost 70 percent of Swazis live in poverty, mostly in rural areas. Because of drought and disease, one in four struggle to have enough food. Swaziland also has the world's highest incidence of HIV and lowest life expectancy rate—approximately 48 years. These problems, which Catholic Relief Services helps to address, have created an enormous number of orphans and vulnerable children.
|Population:||1,370,424 (July 2011 est.)|
|Size:||6,704 sq mi; slightly smaller than New Jersey|
|People Served:||11,801 (2011 est.)|
Catholic Relief Services first began supporting projects in Swaziland in 2002 through the Southern African Catholic Bishops' Conference. Since 2005, Swaziland has been an outreach country of the CRS South Africa office. In 2009, two international staff took residence in Swaziland, working closely with diocesan and Caritas local staff. CRS collaborates with the local Catholic Church to improve food security—particularly among the most vulnerable groups—by responding to the drought with food distributions and agricultural projects. CRS also partners with the Diocese of Manzini to help mitigate the effects of HIV.
PartnersCatholic Church in Swaziland
HIV and AIDS