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Sierra Leone: People & Society#

Population5,743,725 (July 2014 est.)
Population growth rate2.33% (2014 est.)
Age structure0-14 years: 41.9% (male 1,198,553/female 1,208,775)
15-24 years: 18.8% (male 524,819/female 557,142)
25-54 years: 31.6% (male 872,284/female 943,626)
55-64 years: 3.9% (male 101,856/female 123,164)
65 years and over: 3.7% (male 91,198/female 122,308) (2014 est.)
Sex ratioat birth: 1.03 male(s)/female
0-14 years: 0.99 male(s)/female
15-24 years: 0.94 male(s)/female
25-54 years: 0.92 male(s)/female
55-64 years: 0.94 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.78 male(s)/female
total population: 0.94 male(s)/female (2014 est.)
Birth rate37.4 births/1,000 population (2014 est.)
Death rate11.03 deaths/1,000 population (2014 est.)
Ethnic groupsTemne 35%, Mende 31%, Limba 8%, Kono 5%, Kriole 2% (descendants of freed Jamaican slaves who were settled in the Freetown area in the late-18th century; also known as Krio), Mandingo 2%, Loko 2%, other 15% (includes refugees from Liberia's recent civil war, and small numbers of Europeans, Lebanese, Pakistanis, and Indians) (2008 census)
Infant mortality ratetotal: 73.29 deaths/1,000 live births
male: 81.84 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 64.49 deaths/1,000 live births (2014 est.)
LanguagesEnglish (official, regular use limited to literate minority), Mende (principal vernacular in the south), Temne (principal vernacular in the north), Krio (English-based Creole, spoken by the descendants of freed Jamaican slaves who were settled in the Freetown area, a lingua franca and a first language for 10% of the population but understood by 95%)
Life expectancy at birthtotal population: 57.39 years
male: 54.85 years
female: 60 years (2014 est.)
Literacydefinition: age 15 and over can read and write English, Mende, Temne, or Arabic
total population: 43.3%
male: 54.7%
female: 32.6% (2011 est.)
Nationalitynoun: Sierra Leonean(s)
adjective: Sierra Leonean
Net migration rate-3.12 migrant(s)/1,000 population
note: refugees currently in surrounding countries are slowly returning (2014 est.)
ReligionsMuslim 60%, Christian 10%, indigenous beliefs 30%
Total fertility rate4.83 children born/woman (2014 est.)
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate1.5% (2012 est.)
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS57,700 (2012 est.)
HIV/AIDS - deaths3,300 (2012 est.)
Median agetotal: 19 years
male: 18.5 years
female: 19.6 years (2014 est.)
Major infectious diseasesdegree of risk: very high
food or waterborne diseases: bacterial and protozoal diarrhea, hepatitis A, and typhoid fever
vectorborne diseases: malaria, dengue fever, and yellow fever
water contact disease: schistosomiasis
animal contact disease: rabies
aerosolized dust or soil contact disease: Lassa fever (2013)
School life expectancy (primary to tertiary education)total: 7 years
male: 8 years
female: 6 years (2001)
Education expenditures2.9% of GDP (2012)
Urbanizationurban population: 39.2% of total population (2011)
rate of urbanization: 3.04% annual rate of change (2010-15 est.)
Drinking water sourceimproved: urban: 87.1% of population
rural: 42.4% of population
total: 60.1% of population
unimproved: urban: 12.9% of population
rural: 57.6% of population
total: 39.9% of population (2012 est.)
Sanitation facility accessimproved: urban: 22.5% of population
rural: 6.8% of population
total: 13% of population
unimproved: urban: 77.5% of population
rural: 93.2% of population
total: 87% of population (2012 est.)
Major urban areas - populationFREETOWN (capital) 941,000 (2011)
Maternal mortality rate890 deaths/100,000 live births (2010)
Children under the age of 5 years underweight18.6% (2010)
Health expenditures18.8% of GDP (2011)
Physicians density0.02 physicians/1,000 population (2010)
Hospital bed density0.4 beds/1,000 population (2006)
Obesity - adult prevalence rate6.8% (2008)
Child labor - children ages 5-14total number: 573,287
percentage: 48 % (2005 est.)
Mother's mean age at first birth19
note: median age at first birth among women 25-29 (2008 est.)
Contraceptive prevalence rate11% (2010)
Dependency ratiostotal dependency ratio: 78.3 %
youth dependency ratio: 73.5 %
elderly dependency ratio: 4.8 %
potential support ratio: 21 (2014 est.)