The Situation

With the highest AIDS rate in the world, now thought to be over 40%, the statistics say Swaziland’s population will actually become extinct in the next decade — the only nation in history ever to become extinct in a single generation because of disease. The unemployment rate is approximately 40%, and nearly 70% of the population live on less than one American dollar per day.

The Problem

  • Population: 1,000,000 and declining
  • Population under the age of 15: 500,000
  • Only 10% of 15-year-olds will reach the age of 35
  • 4,000 Infants are infected with HIV/AIDS each year
  • 60% of women who are tested have HIV/AIDS
  • 43% of adults are infected with HIV/AIDS
  • There are only 3,500 hospital beds in Swaziland
  • Life expectancy: 32.23 years
  • Estimated 120,000 orphans
  • 1 out of 10 homes in Swaziland are led by children under the age of 11
  • 40% of Swazi children are suffering from malnutrition
  • 10 people depend on each person with a job
  • 69% of Swazis live on less than $1 (US) per day

The Solution

We believe part of the solution comes in the form of ICBC - In Community By Community.

This is the empowering of people within a community to take care of themselves and others through the local church.  To meet the needs of a community, especially of the orphaned, abandoned and abused children, Challenge Ministries seeks to raise up a Pastor, house mothers and individuals who can begin Sustainability Projects.  Then the community begins acquiring land to build children's homes, church buildings and fenced off areas for agriculture and animal breeding.  There has been great success in the area of ICBC, within many individuals being equipped to serve others and realise their God-given potential.  

Currently there are 4 ICBCs over Swaziland, with the vision to see 60 across the nation, tackling poverty, dependency, HIV and AIDS in God's way. Read more about the individual ICBCs here.

Bulembu Ministries is a success story for many in the area of sustainability and care of children.  Bulembu is now a thriving community with sustainable businesses in the area of diary, water, timber and honey and more with numerous children homes and a highly successful school holding 300 children. Discover the hope for Swaziland in a place like Bulembu.

The Kingdom of Swaziland

The Kingdom of Swaziland is a small, landlocked country in Southern Africa (one of the smallest on the continent). Swaziland offers a wide variety of landscapes, from the mountains along the Mozambican border to savannas in the east and rain-forest in the northwest. 


The History

Present-day Swaziland has been inhabited since the Stone Age. Rock paintings, possibly by the San people, have been found throughout Swaziland.

During the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries, an African people of Nguni descent migrated southward from Central Africa. Eventually, during the mid-eighteenth century, a group of them settled in the area which is now Swaziland. These people, the Nkosi Dlamini, became known as the Swazis, and today both names live on. Nkosi means ‘king’ and Dlamini is the surname of the royal family. The country derives its actual name from a later king, Mswati I but another name, Ngwane, is an alternative word for Swaziland.

By the middle of the nineteenth century Boers had started to farm land in Swaziland. Following wars between the Boer Republics and the British, Swaziland became a British Protectorate (1902).

Swaziland became an independent country in 1968, led by King Sobhuza the second. His Majesty was a very wise man, who led well. He brought the nation together again, ready to face the next phase in our history.

In 1986 Mswati III became the ruler of the Kingdom of Swaziland, taking on the mantle of his father. It is one of the few absolute monarchies left in the world.