Home to almost one-fifth of the world’s population, China borders 14 countries and has the third largest land area of any country in the world.

  • Population: 1,341,335,000
  • Life Expectancy: 73 years
  • Access to Safe Water: 89%
  • School Enrollment: 96%
  • Land Mass: 3,705,407 sq. mi.
  • Literacy Rate: 94%
  • Under Age 5 Mortality Rate: 18/1000
  • Average Annual Income (GNI): 4,260

Facts about China

Economic Development

While new construction and increased urbanization has boosted the economy, these processes are energy-intensive and polluting. A program to clean up Beijing’s air and water contamination has shut down or relocated factories and replaced coal-burning furnaces with cleaner natural gas units.


Since 1990, mortality rates for children under age 5 have declined by 25 percent, but high rates persist in rural areas that do not have quality medical care.


The HIV and AIDS problem continues to grow, with new cases rising dramatically from 2002 to 2007. Over 700,000 Chinese now live with HIV and AIDS.

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Progress in China

Thanks to the generous support of our sponsors. World Vision was able to work alongside communities to accomplish the following in 2012.

  • Helped assist children with school support.

  • Trained teachers in child-centered education and holistic development. The quality of education improved, and fewer students ended up repeating a grade.

  • Worked with schools to create after-school groups where children can learn how to sing, act, and make music together.

  • Low income community members learned how to grow pear, walnut, and Chinese pine trees, as well as how to sell the trees to local buyers.

  • Planned and celebrated community events to bring people together and increase community spirit.

  • Disabled children in the community now know more about taking care of themselves and attending school, thanks in part to rehabilitation training.

  • Conducted HIV and AIDS awareness training in schools to reduce new cases and ease the negative stigma associated with HIV and AIDS.

  • Conducted traffic safety classes in school to reduce the number of accidents.

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    World Vision in China Today

    World Vision is committed to partnering with the people of China to improve their lives today and to help enact sustainable solutions for the future of their children, families, and communities. World Vision’s child sponsorship program plays a vital role in this partnership, with donors from the United States sponsoring more than 7,300 girls and boys. In addition to sponsorship, World Vision operates other programs that benefit communities in China. World Vision has also responded to natural disasters over the past few years:

    • When a massive snowstorm in January and February 2008 affected over 47 million people, World Vision distributed quilts, generators, rice, and child-friendly kits to more than 300,000 people.
    • After a 7.3 magnitude earthquake in March 2008 and a 7.9 earthquake in May 2008, World Vision supplied food and medical supplies to the survivors and supported the rebuilding of 27 schools and over 7,900 homes.
    • World Vision provided relief and recovery support to survivors of the April 2010 7.1 earthquake in the Qinghai Province. The earthquake killed over 2,500 people and affected more than 100,000 more.

    World Vision History in China

    A 1947 trip to China awakened Dr. Bob Pierce, who founded World Vision three years later, to humanitarian needs around the world.  It would be another three decades before World Vision was able to respond to humanitarian needs. Since then, some major accomplishments in the country include:

    • Helping people in Hong Kong affected by Typhoon Wanda in 1962.
    • Distributing relief supplies to survivors of massive floods in 1981 and 1991.
    • Providing food, medicine, temporary shelter, clothing, blankets, and the rehabilitation of houses and public buildings after the 1988 Yunnan earthquake.
    • Offering health education, training opportunities, orphan care, and the construction of water systems in the 21st century.

    Geography & People

    Geography and people

    Home to almost one-fifth of the world’s population, China borders 14 countries and has the third largest land area of any country in the world.

    China’s terrain varies from mountains, high plateaus, and deserts in the west to plains, deltas, and hills in the east. The diverse climate ranges from tropical in the south to subarctic in the north.

    Natural resources include coal, iron ore, petroleum, natural gas, mercury, tin, aluminum, zinc, and uranium. China also has the world’s largest potential for hydropower.

    Most of China’s population is Han Chinese, while 55 other ethnic groups make up the remainder. There are eight major languages and hundreds of dialects.

    About 70 percent of people work in agriculture growing rice, wheat, tea, and a variety of other crops. Many farming families struggle to grow even enough food to feed their children and rarely have a surplus to sell for other needs.

    Families are very important in China. Children are expected to care for their aging parents. Most families have only one child.


    The earliest Chinese settlements date to around 5000 B.C. in the Yellow River Basin. Feudal states—often at war with one another—did not unite until late 200 B.C. with the construction of the Great Wall. China remained mostly isolated from other countries until the 1850s when the West gained trading power and the Port of Hong Kong fell under British rule.

    Ongoing internal battles for control kept China in a state of civil war until Communism gained power in the 1940s. The Mao regime proclaimed the People’s Republic of China on October 1, 1949.

    Economic reforms in the 1970s increased consumer prices and improved the standard of living. Over the next decade, the population’s growing disagreement with country leadership led to the 1989 Tiananmen Square protests.

    China regained Hong Kong and joined the World Trade Organization in the 1990s. In August 2008, China hosted the 29th Summer Olympic Games in Beijing.

    Natural disasters have marked the past few years: a severe snowstorm and two large earthquakes in 2008, and a 7.1 earthquake in April 2010.

    Prayer Requests for China

    • Please pray that more disabled children receive the opportunity to attend school.
    • The hundreds of thousands of people in China with HIV and AIDS who face discrimination in their neighborhoods and work places.
    • People struggling to recover from natural disasters.
    • Families living in poverty to find jobs and have access to life basics like food and healthcare.