Cobalt is used for producing gadgets like smartphones and laptops. It is also essential for creating clean energy. Two-thirds of cobalt mineral deposits are in the Democratic Republic of Congo. This is why many Congolese men, women, and children are involved with cobalt mining. Though most don't even know how cobalt is used, obtaining it is their livelihood.
Hand mining of cobalt is damaging to people’s health and the environment. For the children, there is a risk of delayed growth. Children who work in the mines grow slower or, at some point, stop growing at all. Pregnant women risk having premature births, or even stillbirths, or having babies with fetal abnormalities. Can anything be done to solve the problem?