“Literacy is a bridge from misery to hope.” ~ Kofi Anan
To be literate, or the ability to read and write, is an incredible privilege that unlocks opportunities for progress, self-expression, and joy. The global average literacy rate is 86.81%, which is amazing, but there are some countries that fall below a 50% literacy rate. The team at U.S. Career Institute delved into research about literacy rates around the world to create this visualization. It highlights the countries that excel at literacy as well as the countries in need of support:
As usual, Scandinavian countries rule supreme with Finland and Norway both having 100% literacy rates. It also states that North Korea has a 100% literacy rate, although I question the integrity of their reporting. The literacy rate of the United States is 99% despite being in last place for countries with the highest literacy rates! The country with the lowest literacy rate is Chad with 26.76%. It makes you wonder what could be achieved if more opportunities for literacy growth could reach these countries. Here are some excellent resources if you are interested in supporting worldwide literacy and education:
- 9 in 10 Children in Africa Can’t Read – These Organizations Are Working to Change That – Global Citizen
- The Samburu Project – This charity strives towards access to clean water in Samburu, Africa. They found that with access to water, the number of girls attending primary school doubled!
- Malala Fund – this charity supports girls’ access to education, which is in dire straits due to the pandemic.
- World Literacy Foundation – This charity has won many accolades for its transparency and commitment to the cause.