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Let's Find Out...

...ABOUT THE KINGDOM OF LESOTHO

  • The Kingdom of Lesotho is a small landlocked country in southern Africa, surrounded by South Africa. Its capital city is Maseru. 

  • Population is approximately 2,074,000 (2013, World Bank). Most live in rural areas & most of the population is between 15 and 64 years of age, with a strong youth population of close to 35%. The people are called Basotho.

  • The main language is Sesotho, used in daily life, but English is also an official language, and is the language of education. "Lesotho" translates roughly as "the land of the people who speak Sesotho".

  • Students may walk up to 2 hours each way to and from school. Primary schooling to Grade 7 is free, but teachers, equipment and resources are challenged. Only 20% of youth are able to continue to high school where school fees apply.

  • Lesotho is known as The Mountain Kingdom. Its elevation is the third highest in the world (80% of the country lies above 1,800 metres), & its lowest point of 1,400 metres is higher than that of any other country.

  • Lesotho is in the Southern hemisphere, so their summer is from December to March & their winter from June to September. Winter sees snow on the mountains, more as you go higher. It is cold in the lowlands with little or no snow.

  • Crops include maize, sorghum, wheat, barley, oats, beans, potatoes & spinach. Livestock include sheep, goats, cattle, horses and donkeys.

  • Lesotho has the second highest HIV prevalence rate in the world – more than 23 % of people, or just under one in four people in the country are living with HIV.

  • Over half of the 260,000 adults living with HIV in Lesotho are women.

  • There are currently more than 200,000 orphans in Lesotho, most of whom are AIDS orphans.