The Karamoja region is one of the most backward in Africa. The greatest obstacles to development in the region are insecurity and water shortage.
The Karimojong are seasonally nomadic shepherds but it is to be noted that livestock, in most cases a single source of income, is not sufficient to ensure the livelihood of family members. Livestock remains, however, the fundamental element around which the existence of the Karimojong people revolves. This wealth is used as an exchange in weddings, but also as an object of racing among different tribes. It follows that the Karamoja region is one of the most dangerous in Uganda.
There are no adequate toilet facilities in the region (latrine and / or toilet). Most villages have no water. Women continue to cook in contact with the earth. These are the main causes of the spread of certain diseases, in addition to the small rains that, falling sporadically during the season (March-May, July-October) seriously compromise crops. Malnutrition is widespread in the entire region and is particularly evident among the groups that practice pastoralism in the central and eastern part of Karamoja. By basing their diet especially on sorghum, many people suffer from protein and vitamin deficiencies.
In Karamoja infant mortality is 147/1000 against 81/1000 of Ugandan average, mortality below 5 years 240/1000 against 203/1000 of the entire country. The proportion of assisted parts in Karamoja is 9.7% versus 40% of the national average while the presence of latrines is 13.6% versus 48% for the entire country.
In Uganda there are about 2 million orphans whose 45% are caused by HIV / AIDS and the number is steadily rising. 2004-05 estimates account for 6.4% (over 800,000 people) of the adult population affected by the HIV / AIDS virus.
Malaria remains the leading cause of mortality in the country: 52% of out-of-hospital attendance and 30% hospital admissions are recorded. For 95% of Uganda, malaria is considered endemic. This disease is responsible for 9-14% of the deaths of inpatients and 20-23% of the deaths of children under 5 years of age.
In the region 82% of the population is illiterate, (against 40% of the Ugandan national average). Only 6% of women read and write, while 80% of children do not attend school. The HDI development index is 0.180; Over 70% of the population lives below the poverty line.