Years after Live Aid

How have African countries developed before and after Live Aid? Discover how the continent's outlook has changed...

For many, awareness of the problems and challenges faced by people living in African countries began with the legendary Live Aid event of 1985. But many African countries have long been troubled by hardships - many stemming from colonial rule imposed by Europeans in the 19th century. Independence and the aftermath of colonialism brought fresh challenges, from social and political division to deepening economic problems. Live Aid sought to shed light on many of these difficulties, and to encourage people around the world to support Africa develop into a healthier, happier, and more prosperous continent.

Here, we examine the difficulties and changes encountered in individual African countries in the years after Live Aid. We also take a special look at how SOS Children has helped vulnerable children and fragile families cope with the hardships faced by communities across the continent.


The story begins

An introduction to African history, from the decline of colonialism in the 1950s. Here we provide a background to the development history charted on this site. A great place to find out where independent African countries started out from.

Learn about Africa's journey to independence...

Child sponsorship Basse, The Gambia

A year-by-year guide

Here, you can find a year-by-year summary of challenges and changes in African countries. This easy-to-digest overview offers a whistle-stop tour of Africa's history from 1950 to the present day. Start here to see the whole picture.

Take a brief tour of Africa...

Sponsor a child Port Elizabeth, South Africa

Africa after Live Aid

A more detailed exploration of the various political, social and economic issues faced by people living in countries across the continent. Read about what SOS Children is doing to help families and children in African countries.

Read about Africa in the years after Live Aid...