The Republic of Botswana is a medium-sized country in southern Africa that shares its borders with South Africa, Namibia, Zambia, and Zimbabwe. Seventy percent of this landlocked country is covered by the Kalahari Desert, and, partially due to this fact, it is one of the most sparsely populated countries in the world, with only about two million people living across more than 220,000 square miles of land (approximately nine people per square mile). At the time of its independence from the United Kingdom in 1966, Botswana was one of the poorest countries in Africa with a GDP per capita of $70. Today, Botswana has one of the fastest growing economies in the world and has a GDP per capita of approximately $14,000. Its high level of development and its strong democratic government make Botswana one of the most stable countries in Sub-Saharan Africa.
In spite of its positive political and economic condition, Botwana’s spiritual decline is evident in its life-expectancy figures. Sources tell us that from 1995 to 2005, nearly 28 years were lost from the Batswana’s life-expectancy at birth, with this figure increasing in recent years only due to better medical care for AIDS patients. This disease has been propagated by rampant sexual immorality, leading to Botswana’s rank as second in the world in AIDS prevalence. Though the Tswana were the first Bantu people to respond to Gospel efforts through the London Missionary Society, they are characterized today by widespread immorality and drunkenness. Furthermore, the tribal religions of the Batswana people remain strong and are often integrated into a shell of Christian beliefs. Botswana is in great need of solid, Gospel-centered churches characterized by sound biblical teaching and practice.
Sources: Wikipedia, Joshua Project, and Operation World