It will be a joy to hand over our gifts from the Jar of Grace to the principal of the school at Bwaziba and the other individuals whose projects we support.

Parts of Africa still require aid. We know that from personal experience.

We have seen in parts of Luweero how government health services are simply inadequate. Your Jar of Grace offerings, will ease suffering, keep children alive who might otherwise have died and play a vital role in educating them as they grow up. But we need to know that there is another side to the continent of Africa.

The Director of the Royal Africa Society writes: “Too often, the images of Africa presented to us are of poverty, disease and war. Undoubtedly it can throw up some real horrors. But on this diverse continent, with snow on the equator, dense jungle and huge deserts, there is wealth and success as well as poverty and failure.

Africa is increasingly prosperous and peaceful. Infant mortality has fallen from 120 per thousand in 1990 to 55 per thousand in 2016. The population will double between now and 2050, when the median age of its citizens will be 25 years old.

Africa’s economic growth rate is expected to rise to 4.5% next year. That is the second highest in the world after East Asia. By 2025, 400 African companies will bring in an annual revenue of $1 billion”.

Elections have been an issue. The recent political crisis in The Gambia had a familiar flavour with the president refusing to accept the democratic vote. But disaster has been averted, and he has gone. And a little while ago in Nigeria, the president Goodluck Johnathan stepped down and handed power peacefully to his successor, David Mark, providing a model for other nations. Today, only three African countries do not hold regular elections. Some are flawed and, in some cases, fixed but fewer presidents sleep easily on the eve of an election.

Barack Obama’s $9.7 billion project Power Africa, is set to transform energy. Let’s pray that President Trump will continue it. Even if he fails to do so, Africa will still be the fastest urbanising continent in the world.

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