- Home of the worst war since World War II.
- Most dangerous place on earth to be a woman.
- The IMF, World Bank and CIA all call us the poorest country in the world.
- Congo is one of the most corrupt countries in the world.
- Oh and of course, rape capital of the world.
- And if it was possible to measure the unemployment rate, we'd probably top that list too.
Jean's wife, Bibi, buys a 50 kilo sack of green beans from a distributor for around 60,000 francs. This is around $65. She divides this into 1 kilo portions to sell in the market. If she's lucky, she profits $8 to $10 after she's sold the whole sack. This takes about 2 weeks. That's right, $8 to $10 after 2 weeks of work.
Jean and Bibi have 6 children. Three girls and three boys. Their house has 2 bedrooms and a small living room. Here's what the rest of their expenses add up to look like over a month. *These, of course, are all estimates:
Pondu and other greens: $15
Tomatoes, rice, peppers, onions, cooking oil: $20
Bread, tea, sugar, butter, milk: $100
Charcoal for cooking: $20
Electricity (usually not on): $5
Water (at shared outdoor faucet): $12
Phone credit: $5
Transportation to and from work: $50
Monthly Total: $362 vs. Monthly Pay: $360
Here's when that extra few dollars Jean's wife can make at the market becomes essential for his family. With a budget like this, an illness can be catastrophic and there's no possibility for savings.
It doesn't take long in Congo to understand our list of superlatives.
Bonus: Here's a peek inside some Congolese homes.