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Somalia - Page Text Content

S: Somalia

BC: The End

FC: Somalia | By Kayla Dostal

1: Welcome to Somalia | Population: 10.11 million.

2: Somalia's History | In a timeline | 600s: Arabs establish Sultanate of Abel on the Gulf of Aden Coast | 1500s: Sultanate of Abel is divided into small states | 1880s: British, Italian, and French* Somaliland are established. | 1900: Somali start a rebellion against Britain. | 1920: Rebellion ends and the Somali fail. However, Somalian nationalism is gained | 1960: British and Italian Somaliland unite to form the Somali Republic.

3: *French Somaliland eventually becomes Dijibouti | 1974: Somalia joins Arab League. | 1991: Somalia gains independence from Britain. | 2010:: Somali Pirate ships account for 49 of the 52 pirate attacks. | 2004: a tsunami hits the Somali coast. | I think Somalia's troubled history explains why the country is in such turmoil today.

4: Somalia Facts | Flag The blue stands for the United Nations who helped Somalia gain independence. White represents peace and prosperity. The star is for the five regions of Somalia. | Language Language is part of the Cushitic family and has three main dialects: Af-Maymay, Af-Benaadir, and standard Somali. Other popular languages spoken include, English, Italian, and Arabic. Did you know? Until Recently, Somali was an unwritten language and many Somalis relied on oral communication through poetry and songs. I can't imagine not being able to write my own language! In 1972, the government adopted Latin-based characters for their language.. The literacy rate grew rapidly as the scripted language was introduced to schools. English to Somali translation: Hello Iska Waran (IK-sah WAR-ahn) Yes Haa (HA-AH) | The capital of Somalia is Mogadishu

5: Somalia is mostly desert with monsoon* in the northeast from December to February and in the southwest from May to October. There is also irregular rainfall and hot and humid periods between monsoons. | Climate | *monsoon: wind established between water and adjoining land. | Temperature ~Yearly Average Temp: 81 degrees Fahrenheit ~Hottest Month: April-averages 90 degrees Fahrenheit ~Coldest Month(s): January, February, July, August, September, December-averages 73 degrees Fahrenheit. | Somalia has a few natural hazards that affect the people living there. Some of the natural hazards include droughts, dust storms during the summer, and floods during the rainy season. | I think Somalia's climate affects what they grow and manufacture.

6: Geography | Located in Eastern Africa, Somalia is east of Ethiopia and borders the Gulf of Aden and Indian Ocean. Somalia is slightly smaller than Texas. (637,657 sq. km making it the 43rd largest country in the world) | Somalia has the Karkaar Mountains, Jubba River, and Shabele River

7: Demographics | Population: The population of Somalia is hard to find because of the large amount of nomads, refugee movements, famine, and clan warfare. However the population is estimated to be about 9,925,640 people. | Literacy Rate: 37.8% Males: 49.7% Females: 25.8% | Life Expectancy: 50 years Males: 48.49 years Females: 52. 37 years | I think the reason the life expectancy is so low is because of all of Somalia's issues: famine and warfare to name some. | Median Age: 17.8 years | Only 2.4% of the population is over 65.

8: Money, Money, Money! | The banknotes in Somalia are called Somali Shillings. | 1600 Somali Shillings = 1 United States Dollar. | Economy | Somalia's informal economy is mostly based on the livestock and is surprisingly stable though they lack a good government system. I think it's surprising how their economy is doing alright though they have such a lack of stability. Their GDP growth rate is even inclining at 2.6%! The livestock account for 40% of the nation's GDP, their GDP being $5.896 billion in 2010.

9: Natural Resources, Manufactured Goods, and Food Products | ~Uranium ~Bananas ~Coconuts ~Corn ~Mangoes ~Beans | Unexploited Resources ~Iron Ore ~Tin ~gypsum ~bauxite ~copper ~salt ~natural gas ~likely oil reserves | What if? I don't understand why the Somalia doesn't deal with all the unexploited resources they have. If they put effort into that, they could maybe eliminate some of the problems that Somalia is facing like Somali pirate.s. How you ask? Well if they made oil wells on their likely oil reserves, they could create more jobs for those who have been forced to be pirates as a way of income.

10: Culture | Appearance: the builds of Somali are usually tall and slender | Women: ~Northern women find the direh* fashionable. ~Southern women like the guntino**. ~Rural women wear mostly the same clothing but a little sturdier. ~All women wear shawls and head scarves. Men: ~Urban men wear western pants or ma'awiis*** with western shirts and shawls. A colorful turban or koofiyad**** is placed on their heads. ~Rural men wear two pieces of cloth, each five yards in length. | I like how the Somalis wear the western clothing but also keep traditional fashions alive like the koofiyad. | *direh: long and flowing dress worn over petticoats. **guntino: a four yard cloth wrapped around one shoulder and tied at the waist. ***ma'awiis: kilt ****koofiyard: embroidered cap

11: Greetings and Gestures | ~In Somalia, it is impolite to point the sole or shoe of your foot at another person. ~It is impolite to use the index finger to call somebody, because that is how you call dogs. ~It is obscene to give a thumbs up. ~Somali men usually greet each other by shaking hand firmly three times and then touching their hand to their heart. ~Members of the opposite gender do not touch each other if they are not familiar. | Music | A popular new genre of music in Somalia broke out after Somali's language was written down. This new music was called heello, which was taken from Somali poetry. | Art | Somalia is known for its oral poetry as their was no written language until the late twentieth century. Some Somali poetry themes include history, poetry, and clan politics. It's amazing how a culture can function without writing for such a long time.

12: Education | Though education in Somalia is valued, it has been greatly interrupted by warfare and other issues. | Early Childhood Development | Early Childhood Development is offered to kids 0-5 and teaches basic reading and numbers. | Primary Education | Primary Education features nine subjects: Arabic, Islamic studies, Somali, mathematics, science, social studies, English, physical education and arts and crafts. | Secondary School | Secondary school is for students ages 15-18 and is four years long. All subjects taught are mandatory. | Tertiary School | Tertiary school can be taken after secondary school. Tertiary schooling is also known as university education and iincludes schools like Mogadishu University | Religious Education | A dugsi is a school where the basic traditional religious instructions are taught. | I think it's sad that kids like Ali aren't getting the education they deserve. After all, they are Somalia's future!

13: Interview with Ali, a Somali Schoolboy (CultureGram Interview Excerpt) | I am in elementary school. I learn many subjects, and my favorite subject is social studies, because we study a lot of Somali stories and they're very interesting to read. There are a lot of things that make me dislike the school. First, it is far from me and takes me at least 30 minutes to get there. Second, going to school is suitable in the morning, but I go to school at very odd hours, and in the mid-afternoon, the sun is very hot. Third, the school doesn't have a playground, the school building is poorly constructed, and there's no equipment for the students to use in classrooms or to play sports or games. Finally, the number of students per class is very large. The classes are noisy, and you can't learn anything. What makes me like the school is that I meet my peers at school and the teachers teach us well. The head teacher gives us suggestions and guidelines for a better future | Age: 10 Male Lives in Borama, Awdal, Somalia

14: Family Life | Family Name: In many clans, a person's first name is their given name, their second name is their father's surname, and their third name is their grandfather's surname. Family Loyalty:Family Loyalty is very important. The family member with the greatest wealth feels he/she should help the other members of the family. Women in Family: Though Somalia is male centric in public, women play a crucial role in the family as women are in business but must also help keep the family in track. I think it's great how "girl power" is shown in Somali's culture and hopefully one day women will be treated equally for all the hard work they have done to support their family. | Somalis generally live in nuclear families. Older parents, however, may move in with their children. | Nomadic Neighborhoods | In nomadic camps, the neighborhood is surrounded by a thorn bush fence to keep out predators. Thorn bushes are also set up for animal corrals. A prayer area is st apart in the camp by a circle of stones | I think family is very important in Somalia and family pride is huge.

15: Food | A major source of food for Somali herdsmen and nomadic families is milk from camels, goats, and cows. | Camels that have become old are slaughtered for their meat. In fact, the fatty meat from the camel's hump is considered a delicacy. Meat is only served a few times a month on special occasions | Durra, honey, dates, rice, and tea are some food staples for Somali nomads. | Muufo is the most popular bread. Muufo is a flat bread made from ground corn flour. | Somalis add flavor to food by smearing it with butter and ghee. Ghee is the clear liquid skimmed from melted butter. | Restaurants are popular in cities and usually are of Italian or Arab cuisine. Food is eaten with the first three fingers of their right hand or is eaten with a spoon. For scooping, a rolled banana leaf may be used. It is customary for women to serve the men and then after the women will eat with their children. | I was surprised to learn Somalia had restaurants just like in the United States. I didn't realize that parts of Somalia are modern.

16: Religion | Religion greatly influences the lives of Somalis. | Most Somalis are Sunni Muslims, but have slightly different practices than most Sunnis. For instance, they have a belief in mortal spirits called jinn. Jinn can cause bad luck and illness or good for humans. | Also unlike other Muslims, Somalis believe religious leaders have the power to bless and curse people. | Mosques can be found in all Somali cities and towns.

17: Cultural Traditions | When someone dies or is born, their are celebrations and feasts. If a women's husband dies, by Islamic practice she must mourn in her house for four months and ten days. | Independence day is celebrated on June 26th. They also celebrate the Foundation of the Republic on July 1st. | At the beginning of August, a new year celebration is held called Dab-Shid, which means Fire-Lighting. | Dab-Shid is a festival held every year in the Lower Shabelle region. During the festival, local people burn a big fire and dance around it to celebrate the new year. They also splash water and in some areas, perform stick fights with fire. In a way, I think it's like how we Americans celebrate new year. We have fireworks to celebrate and dance with our friends and family.

18: Recreation and Entertainment | Soccer is definitely the most popular sport in Somalia. However, war has prevented some of the competition. Most leagues are held in Mogadishu. Besides soccer, few other sports are played. I can understand their love of soccer because I'm in soccer and I love it so much. Seeing their compassion for the sport makes me want to excel in it that much more. | Besides soccer, people enjoy watching movies and listening to CDs and cassettes. | Cultural Arts like poetry, dancing, and music are also very important in Somalis recreational activities. Young nomadic girls and boys often person traditional dances during the rainy season.

19: Current Issue: Somali Pirates | A major current issue in Somalia are the Somali pirates. In 2010, Somali pirates seized a record number of hostages: 1,181 to be exact. Millions of dollars of ransom were paid to the pirates. Loaded with rocket propelled grenades, or RPGs, Somali pirates have about a dozen ships hostage at all times, and even a giant oil vessel every now and then. The pirates can charge up to $25 million ransom for an oil vessel. Since Somalia's government is so poor at the moment, they have no control what so ever over the situation. I think people from all over the world should help with the Somali pirate issue because everyone's ships are being attacked.

20: Government | Current Government Type: Transitional. | Somali's 1979 constitution states that Somalia is headed by a president who is elected to a 7 year term and a 177 member unicameral People's Assembly. The government, however, is currently in transition. | The government is very unstable with constant rebellions. I think the issue Somalia needs to work on most is their government. Once their government is formed the well-being on the country would increase greatly! | The current leader of Somalia is Sheikh Sharif Sheikh Ahmed who was elected on January 30, 2009. The next day he became president.

21: Technology | Number of cellphones: 641,000. | Number of Radio Stations: About 12 | Number of Internet Users: 106,000 | Number of Internet Hosts: 3 | I can't imagine how hard it would be without the technology we have here in America. In fact, I couldn't even do this project without the help of Internet. Many Somalis must be clueless when it comes to the outside world because most don't have TVs, listen to radio, or own a cellphone.

22: Architecture and Housing | The housing for herders is known as aqal, and is a dome-like structure that can be easily assembled and disassembled. The aqal is made from poles covered by hides, woven cloth, or tin. Once disassembled the aqal is carried on a camel's back and then reassembled by the women. | Farmers houses are similar to the aqal, but are known as mundals. Mundals, however, are permanent and made from poles, brush, vines, animal dung, and ashes. They are covered with a cone-shape roof. | I think the crumbling walls of homes in Somalia show the hardships the people and nation are enduring.

23: Another type of housing, arish, are rectangular houses with flat, thin roofs. | In urban areas, residents often have Arab-styled one to two story houses. These houses are made from stone or brick. On the lower windows, there are bars. Usually there are no glass or screens. | Wealthy Somalis have western-styled houses that have tiled roofs and courtyards. | Most homes in Somalia don't even have running water and electricity! I think it would be very hot during the day with air conditioning, especially for the women who are cooking!

24: Global Contributions | Somalia trades sources like Uranium with many countries, including Djibouti,Brazil,Kenya, Thailand, United Arab Emirates, Oman, Kuwait, and India. | I think another global contribution is Somalia's oral poetry. Somalia's famous oral poetry is known throughout the world and is loved by everybody, even if they're not actually Somali.

25: Trivia! | ~Somalia is made up of 27 regions ~Somalia is one of the African countries with the fewest HIV rates. However, 35% of children die under five due to sickness and dehydration. (I think dehydration be due to the fact they have no running water) ~Somalia has the largest refugee camp in the world ~Somalia is the only country in the world that does not have some form of government.

26: Bibliography | Zijlma, Anouk. "Somali Pirates." Africa Travel. Web. 02 May 2011. . "Somalia Climate, Temperature, Average Weather History, Rainfall/ Precipitation, Sunshine." World Weather and Climate Graphs, Average Climate Charts, Guide to Precipitation, Temperatures, Best, Friendly, Holiday Climate. Web. 02 May 2011. Somali Culture Home Page. Web. 02 May 2011. "Geography and Map of Somalia." Geography Home Page - Geography at Web. 02 May 2011 "Culture of Somalia - Traditional, History, People, Women, Beliefs, Food, Customs, Family, Social." Countries and Their Cultures. Web. 02 May 2011.

27: "Convert Somali Shillings (SOS) and United States Dollars (USD)." Currency Exchange Rate Conversion Calculator. Web. 02 May 2011 "CIA - The World Factbook." Welcome to the CIA Web Site — Central Intelligence Agency. Web. 02 May 2011. Brazil, Georgia L., and Barbara J. Reed, eds. "Somalia." Volume Library. Vol. 2. Pleasantville: Southwestern, 2008. 57-58. Print "BBC News - Timeline: Somalia." BBC News - Home. Web. 02 May 2011. Somalia." CultureGrams Online Edition. ProQuest, 2011. Web. 28 Mar 2011.

28: Picture Sources | Title Page: Page 1: Girl Man with Camel Somali Pirate Page 2: Sultanate of Abel Arab League Flag Somali Pirate Ship Page 4 Somalia Flag Climate Page 6 Political Map of Somalia Africa Page 8 Bank Notes | Page 10 Koofiyad Guntino Page 12 Ali Page 14 Somali Family Somali Food Somalia Food #2 Page 16 Somali Mosque

29: Page 17 Somalia Independence Day Somalis playing soccer Page 19 Somali pirates attack ship Somali Pirates Page 20 Somali President Somali man on computer Page 22 Mundals Aqal Arish Urban Home

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  • By: Kayla D.
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