Certain parts of the world are difficult places to grow up in, including these 10 worst countries for children. The majority of them are in Africa, but countries in South America, Asia and the Indian Subcontinent also make the list. There are many reasons for somewhere being the worst place for children to live, from high infant mortality rates to child labor and a lack of education. We reveal what’s happening in these countries that are the worst places to live when you’re a child, with shocking statistics about what life is really like.
A lack of access to education comes up in many of the countries that are included in our video. Three African countries top the list for the highest proportion of children who never step foot inside a classroom. These are Liberia, South Sudan and Eritrea, all of which have more than half of the child population missing out on a primary education.
A high rate of child labor often goes hand in hand with situations like these. Many of the countries on this list have huge numbers of children involved in work, and this can be in hazardous activities, like in Somalia. Children in this country and others are involved in armed conflict, often being forcibly recruited or abducted. This is the case in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and South Sudan too.
Child mortality rates are shockingly high in some of these African countries, and none more so than Angola. The figure of how many children die before their fifth birthday is heartbreaking. Children’s way of life in certain countries is a far cry from Western life. And this can be seen in the way girls are treated, with teen pregnancy and child marriage rates that are beyond anything we could imagine, particularly in Niger. And in countries like Brazil, poverty can force the poorest of children into horrific roles as sex workers just to make enough money to eat.
Child labor statistics and working conditions are staggering in countries like India and China. And then there’s the fact that there have been limits to the number of children that are even allowed to be born. Information from the likes of Unicef, Save the Children, the National Forum for the Prevention of Child Labor and Maplecroft all cast a revealing light on the plight of millions of children around the globe.