Could You Live on $1.25 a Day? A Unit Study on Niger


In Guidan Gado, Niger, a drought and outdated farming methods have caused starvation and an exodus of young men from the village. Through Raise a Village, Samaritan’s Purse hopes to change the lives of these people. Sixty-five percent of Niger’s population lives on less than $1.25 per day and forty-three percent of children suffer from chronic malnutrition.

Can you imagine living on less than $1.25 per day? What if your precious children were suffering from malnutrition?

Raise Hope for an Abundant Future

On July 10, Samaritan’s Purse launched Raise a Village, a 10-day effort to raise enough money to transform the village of Guidan Gado, Niger, by providing basic necessities. In just two days, they surpassed the original goal of $85,000. God used prayers and support to change lives.

Because of the overwhelming support, Samaritan’s Purse will not only be able to help every one of the 1,400 people with what they need to survive in this harsh land—goats and other livestock, seeds for cultivating crops, and clean water—but they will also expand the programs in Guidan Gado and reach out into the surrounding villages.


In support of the Raise a Village campaign, I am part of a team of homeschool educators who are partnering with Samaritan’s Purse to bring you an educational unit study of Niger.  Please visit my friends and help spread the word about the determined and caring villagers of Guidan Gado.

The Geography of Niger

Guidan Gado and most of Niger is in the Sahel region of West Africa. The Sahel has a unique climate that is not quite desert yet, but desertification is a problem. The region has few trees and little access to improved water sources.  Average temperatures in the Sahel during the dry season are about 109 degrees Fahrenheit.  While Samaritan’s Purse staff was in the country in June, temperatures reached 120-130 degrees Fahrenheit each day. In order to help the people thrive in this difficult climate, Samaritan’s Purse has a goal to provide improved seeds that have a shorter growing cycle and also teach them dry season farming techniques.

Certain areas of Niger have less than 24% access to improved water sources. “As a part of our Raise a Village effort in Guidan Gado, we hope to provide a new, more reliable water source for the people in this village, as well as those who travel from surrounding communities to find water there.

Making a Salt Dough Map of Niger


  • 1 part salt
  • 1 part cold water – make sure it is cold, you do not want to dissolve the salt.
  • 2 parts flour

That is all you need. For our map, we used 1/2 cup salt, 1/2 cup water, and 1 cup flour.  Combine the flour and salt, then stir in the water as you mix. Next, you need to get your hands dirty as you knead the dough into a ball.


Place your map under a piece of wax paper and trace over the outline with a Sharpie.  Place the wax paper on a baking sheet and preheat your oven to a very low temperature. We use 180-degrees. Carefully take little globs of dough and spread it out within the outline of your country. Be sure to make mountains! Poke holes into all the major landforms, such as mountains, lakes, rivers, and major cities.


Bake the dough for about 20-30 minutes. Let it cool and then glue the country to a posterboard.

Niger is surrounded by seven other countries, so we drew rough borders and added the names of the neighbors.


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4 thoughts on “Could You Live on $1.25 a Day? A Unit Study on Niger

  1. Kristi Stephens

    This is so great! We have close family living in Niger as missionaries, and I’m excited to do this unit study with our kids! Thanks so much for putting this together and for supporting what God is doing through Samaritan’s Purse!

  2. Pingback: Niger Geography Printables and Unit Study Links - Homeschool Creations

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