Geography and people

Bordered by eight countries, Tanzania sits on the eastern coast of Africa. The country’s three islands – Mafia, Zanzibar and Pemba – lie to the east in the Indian Ocean.

Three large lakes border Tanzania, and its northern area features Mount Kilimanjaro, the highest point in Africa.

The climate varies from tropical along the coast to temperate in the highlands. Natural resources include hydropower, natural gas, iron ore, tin, nickel, phosphates, coal, diamonds, gemstones and gold.

Almost all of Tanzania’s population, excluding the famous Masai, are of Bantu origin, representing more than 130 tribes. Swahili and English are the country’s official languages, with English most often used in commerce, administration and higher education.



Life expectancy

Life expectancy

Literacy rate

Literacy rate

Access to safe water

Access to safe water

Average annual income

Average annual income

Fast facts


Tanzania's economy is highly dependent upon agriculture, but only a little more than four percent of the land is arable. 68 percent of people live below the poverty line (UNICEF, 2007-2011), and the World Food Programme estimates that over 40 percent live in chronic food-deficit areas.


Disease and poor sanitation threaten the health of Tanzanians. Only almost half of the population has access to clean water


More than 1.5 million Tanzanians live with HIV and AIDS (UNICEF, 2012), and almost one million children have lost one or both parents to the disease.


75 percent of the population resides in rural areas and 80 percent are focused on agriculture with rural per capita income well below £1.20 per day.

Our focus in Tanzania

World Vision is committed to partnering with the people of Tanzania to improve their lives and livelihoods today and to help deliver sustainable solutions for the future of them and their children. Our child sponsorship programme plays a vital role in this partnership, with donors from the United Kingdom sponsoring 2,807 girls and boys (as of April 2014) across two community projects. In addition to sponsorship, World Vision also works on projects and grants that include agricultural, health, water, sanitation and child protection interventions that benefit Tanzanian communities. Highlights of our work include:

Creating children’s clubs where boys and girls can learn about their rights and how to advocate for their own and other children rights with the authorities.

Improving physical wellbeing by training community-based healthcare service providers and establishing community care for residents living with HIV/AIDS.

Helping residents improve economic wellbeing by establishing community banks and distributing small loans to farming entrepreneurs in collaboration with Vision Fund our sister organisation.

Improving children's experience of school by renovating primary school structures and educating parents about the importance of boy/girl education.

Our Achievements in Tanzania

World Vision opened a national office in Tanzania in 1981. Since then, some of World Vision’s major accomplishments include:

Health and emergency relief

Offering aid to victims of a cholera epidemic and providing emergency relief projects for people affected by flooding during the 1980s.

Water and farming

Improving access to clean water and education, and offering agricultural assistance during the 1990s.

Eco Development

Economic Development

Currently, World Vision Tanzania is testing how to transform rural communities into eco-villages to increase their resilience and capacity to adapt to climate change. As low carbon economies it planned that crop yield will increase and food security and natural resource management will improve.

Child Development

Enhanced capabilities of families, local institutions and faith communities to support the wellbeing of children and care for the environment.


Pray for our work in Tanzania »