Uganda ranks 162th (2017) in the UN Development Programme’s Human Development Index (HDI), which monitors social and economic growth in the world. Despite a significant progress achieved by Uganda in recent time (HDI increased by 1.9 over the past 17 years), it remains in the group of the least developed countries.
A fast population growth is a serious challenge for Uganda. Statistically, each woman in Uganda gives birth to five children, and young people make up the most of the population. The country has high indicators of maternal mortality (343 deaths per 100,000 births) and high child mortality rate below one year of age (35 deaths for 1,000 people, whereas in Poland this indicator is 4/1,000) (source). Limited access to medical services and professional medical equipment is a widespread problem, which makes effective diagnostics and treatment impossible. The World Bank’s universal health coverage index, which may be valued between 0 and 80, is 44 for Uganda (2015) and is similar to that of other countries in the region (Poland’s universal health coverage index stands at 75) (source).
The fact that young people prevail in Uganda’s social structure also presents great challenges for the education sector. Only half of Ugandan children who start primary school education at the age of six complete all curriculum and graduate. The rest of children stop schooling before reaching the age of twelve (source). It is of critical importance for Uganda’s social development to ensure conditions for effective teaching of children. Primary schools have 43 pupils per teacher, which has a negative impact on the quality of education (source). Overcrowded and insufficiently equipped classes, which is a common phenomenon, do not create a good environment for learning. This situation translates into the state of the whole society, where just under 80 percent of men and only 62 percent of women are literate (2012, source).