Uganda has an estimated population of 40 million people, 56% of whom are below the age of 18. Of those aged 15 or over, 15% cannot read or write, and 25% of children aged 5-14 are used in child labour. Only 25% of children in Uganda continue into secondary education, with just 1 in 10 doing so in poorer, rural areas. In these areas it is commonplace for children to return to their families for subsistence farming upon completing primary school. 66% of the population of Uganda works in agriculture.
The infant mortality rate in Uganda is 38/1000 live births, and the mortality rate for those under 5 years old is 90/1000. The main causes of mortality in infants are preventable diseases such as malaria and pneumonia, malnutrition and complications during birth. Life expectancy in Uganda is just 54 years.
The effects of 2 decades of civil war in the 1970s and 1980s along with the global AIDS pandemic in the late 1990s have left Uganda in turmoil. 1 in 8 children in Uganda today are orphans, with 90% having lost their parents through AIDS.