Introduction / History
The Sokoro people live in the southern part of the Guera province of Chad, west of Melfi. They number between 6,000 and 8,000 speakers, a small percentage of whom live in the capital city of N'Djamena.
The Sokoro are subsistence farmers, growing millet and peanuts for their own consumption and limited market sale. There is rarely sufficient harvest to see them through the whole year, thus the final months before the early harvest in December are often near famine conditions. This area is sub-sahelian thus receives rain only during the period between June and October.
The region has been increasingly influenced by Islam over the past few generations to the point where it is very difficult for individuals to convert to another religion. Each village has a mosque and the largest village of Gogmi has a small evangelical church pastored by a native missionary and his family. Some New Testament portions are now available in the language and a Sokoro Bible translation team continues to work towards having the New Testament in this language.
There is a small clinic in the area which serves all the sedentary and nomadic peoples of the region. Many people are accustomed to bringing their loved ones to the clinic only when all of their traditional healing has failed, so educational efforts have been made particularly focusing on pregnant women. Schools function sporadically and often only the boys attend, although the past generation has had an increasing number of girls attending. Subsequently literacy rates are very low. A Chadian-overseen literacy program is now in place in the Sokoro language which should improve both adult and child literacy rates in the near future.
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