A through four simple steps
Poverty is an issue that cannot be minimized to a single spectrum. Poverty is seen in the lack of basic necessities such as education, the gender inequality seen globally and especially in healthcare inaccessibility. A world in which the possession of insurance comes before human life is one with an inability to advance. I have seen poverty through my own eyes, especially in underdeveloped countries in Latin America, where I was raised. I consider myself a part of the very scarce elite, where going to school was the dreaded routine and all of my necessities were always beyond covered. Despite this, one of my best friends as a child was a boy, almost teenager, who had been adopted at a stoplight by my grandfather with nothing more than the clothes he was wearing. A little boy whose family was most likely unable to gather resources to raise another child. A family who was directly affected by a large economic problem, leaving millions in deplorable conditions across the globe. He was lucky to be taken in, where he began to get an education and later was given the choice to pursue whatever life he wanted to lead. However most stories like this are not happy ones, children in similar conditions have been taken in with a promise of a better life and then find themselves subject to rape, abuse and forced labor.
Why is it 1 out of every 7 people are unable to afford or obtain a single meal a day? What can be done about poverty? How can anyone even attempt to tackle a monster of that magnitude? It begins with taking small steps. To rid a country of the deep rooted poverty at its core, the first step that must be taken is implementing the technology and systematic advancements that will give access to the billion starving people on this earth, we must raise awareness. The problem is not that we cannot sustain feeding 7 billion people, it is that the access is tremendously limited and misallocated. As addressed by Josette Sheeran in the TED talk “Ending Hunger Now” ridding children of the responsibility to beg in order to survive, by providing food in local schools there is a direct relationship between availability and enrollment. Giving access to cost effective food supplies in underdeveloped countries creates a domino effect in which there is a raise in education and a dramatic fall in child marriage due to the fact girls begin to attend schools to be able to eat. It is only when the basic necessities of life are covered: food, water, clothing and shelter that we can advance to providing an education. Through solutions like those we can achieve both of these in parallel.
Gender inequality is one of the key factors that inhibits and perpetuates the abolishment of extreme poverty. It is imperative to teach the 3.5 billion women in the world that their abilities and skill sets are needed, breaking out of the sexist perception that only men are capable of sustaining a family and specially that it is them who should be working single handedly. This can be achieved by focusing NGOs attention towards giving women access to credit and land ownership, overall giving them the capacity to overtake an active role in agriculture and other jobs. It is not only Africa and the Eastern hemisphere we should refer to, in the western world many women think of themselves as unqualified to provide for and are victims to domestic abuse with no escape due to the lack of self sustainability they have. Giving an education to one of the 130 million girls that are denied one, is a place to start and a way to amplify the workforce and create a stronger flow of money in the economy leading to a more developed world as a whole. Corporations can supply this opportunity through means such as advertising
Finally, it is inaccessibility to healthcare among other issues that does not allow for the common person to advance. A report released by the World Bank merely 2 years ago, dictated that around 400 million people lacked access to basic healthcare. A world where 1 billion people live in extreme poverty, meaning less than 1.25$ a day should focus most directly upon the top two priorities, which should be the guarantee of safety and health. Once these two simple factors are strongly enforced by a government, through the aid of NGOs and simple courses on self sustainability – teaching society about cost effective ways of treating diseases and other issues – will be the first step towards achieving the complete eradication of poverty. Furthermore, each local school in an area with no access to clean water or food should be supplied by an NGO of an infrastructure with storage and basic nutrition packages -ranging in cost from 20 to 70 cents- as well as a ceramic filter used to treat water and the method to use it.
Giving people in need the necessary education to achieve self sustainability is the primary way of abolishing extreme poverty, as well as providing limited cost effective resources which will ensure the stabilization of a lifetime of struggle. Once these people are back on their feet and have basic resources such as food and water, they will be able to easily provide for themselves with the help of basic education, the assistance of an priorly inhabilitated workforce as women and finally access to basic treating equipment, along with the knowledge of diagnosing basic diseases. Even with the complete removal of extreme poverty, there are still thousands of people without homes living right in front of us, to solve this it is imperative for us to create projects of construction and simply give housing to the chronically homeless. This may seem a stretch, even slightly absurd, however in a recent study in Utah it was discovered that simply giving the homeless housing and covering the basic necessities for a short period of time will save thousands in the long run. Posterior to acquiring the home, the next step is finding employment; this has changed the life of thousands of people in Utah alone with which provided counseling that gives the homeless the push they need to become functional members of society.