FAQ About Liberia

Where is Liberia, Anyway?
Liberia is a small country located on the western coast of Africa. It it bordered by the Atlantic Ocean, Sierra Leone, Guinea, and Ivory Coast.  It is about four degrees north of the Equator.

What are the physical features of Liberia?
Liberia is about the size of Tennessee, and features forested hills and mountains in the interior with lagoons and mangrove swamps on the coast.

What is the weather like?
Liberia's climate is hot and humid with two distinct season: the rainy seaon from May to October and the dry season from November to April. Most days the temperatures are in the 80s-90s cooling down to the 60s-70s at night. 

What language do they speak?
 English is the national language, but most speak a pidgin called Liberian English that is hard for many Americans to understand. There are also over 20 tribal languages spoken in Liberia. 

 How many people live there?
The population is approximately 3,800,000; almost half of whom live in Monrovia

What religions are found in Liberia?
About 85% profess to be Christian and 12% follow Islam, but most also engage in  traditional African religious practices.

Is it safe to live there?
Certainly Liberia was a very dangerous place during the civil war. But the situation is quite different now. The people of Liberia are tired of war and want to see their country develop into a prosperous nation. There is also a large international force of UN Peacekeepers in the country to step in if any problems arise. Thankfully, incidents are few and far between. Neither Sara or John-Mark have felt their lives threatened in any way in Liberia.

As they would in any third-world country, missionaries living in Liberia take certain precautions to guard their safety. Houses have bars on the windows and fences around the yard. Most keep guard dogs and hire a night watchman to deter any would-be thieves.

The truth is accidents, sickness, robberies etc. occur even in America. While we are mindful of possible dangers, we believe that obedience to God and not personal safety should be our driving motivation.

What about health care?
Many Liberians do not have access to adequate health care and suffer from a variety of diseases such as malaria, dysentery, measles, Hepatitis A and typhoid. Most medical facilities offer only basic treatment. Patients needing more specialized care are often sent to more advanced countries such as Ghana.

By being careful about eating food off the streets and avoiding contaminated water as well as making use of vaccinations and malaria prophylactics, many of these diseases can be avoided.  When missionaries do get sick, most of the time their conditions can be managed in the country. We will however carry emergency evacuation insurance in the event of a medical emergency requiring more specialized care.