Geography and people

Bolivia, a landlocked country in west central South America, borders Brazil, Argentina, Paraguay, Chile and Peru. Despite being situated on a high plateau between two Andes Mountain ranges, 63 percent of Bolivia is actually lowland and includes jungle, pasture and scrubland.

Natural resources include gold, silver, tin, zinc, iron, petroleum, natural gas, timber and hydropower.

Most of Bolivia’s residents are indigenous Quechua or Aymara, or mestizo, of mixed Spanish and Amerindien descent. Caucasian Bolivians, who make up 15 percent of the population, are of Spanish descent. The 2009 constitution designated Quechua, Aymara, and Guarani as official languages alongside Spanish, and also recognised 36 indigenous languages.



Life expectancy

Life expectancy

Literacy rate

Literacy rate

Access to safe water

Access to safe water

Average annual income

Average annual income

School enrollment

School enrollment

Fast facts


Although fewer than 10% of Bolivians are unemployed, about 51% live below the poverty line.


Income distribution is extremely uneven; in 2010, the country had the seventh highest income inequality in the world, with much of the divide falling along racial lines.


Many, especially indigenous groups, have limited access to healthcare and families do not have adequate sanitation.


Child malnutrition rates remain high throughout the country. The World Food Programme estimates that over a quarter of Bolivian children under five suffer from stunting due to malnutrition.


Our focus in Bolivia

World Vision is committed to partnering with the people of Bolivia to improve their lives today and to help deliver sustainable solutions for the future of their children, families and communities. Our child sponsorship programme plays a vital role in this partnership, with donors from the United Kingdom sponsoring over 7,137 girls and boys (as of April 2014) across five community projects. In addition to sponsorship, World Vision operates other programmes that benefit communities in Bolivia.

Highlights of our work include:

Improving food production and reducing the rates of child malnutrition.

Responding to natural disasters and emergencies with relief supplies, as well as helping communities increase their disaster preparedness.

Enriching school experience by distributing school supplies to children.

Our Achievements in Bolivia

World Vision’s child sponsorship work in Bolivia began in 1975. Since then, some major accomplishments include:

Child Development

Sponsoring children and establishing orphanages and childcare centres in the 1970s.


Providing books, tables and chairs to schoolchildren in the 1990s.


Training community healthcare providers and teaching children the importance of dental and general hygiene care during the 1990s.

Community Development

Training local service providers, so they can offer educational programmes, family healthcare, agricultural training and human rights advocacy since 2000.

Food security

Helping farmers grow a wide range of vegetables year-round and teaching them how to prepare balanced meals to improve their children's health since the beginning of the millennium.


Pray for our work in Bolivia »