Poverty by Magda Wyszynska

Walk to end poverty

Author: Magda Wyszynska

Seven Found


What do you think of when you hear the word poverty? No money? No food? No water? No humanity?

Every three and a half seconds one person dies due to hunger-related causes (1). About 1.7 billion people are estimated to live in absolute poverty today. That means they cannot afford basic needs such as clean water, nutrition, health care, education and shelter.

Millions experience relative poverty lacking a usual or socially acceptable level of resources or income as compared with others within a society or country (2).

Today, poverty reduction is a major goal and issue for many international organizations such as the United Nations and the World Bank.

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Lack of Money

Poverty relates directly to the lack of money. In the image below you can see how it is spread around the globe. The map shows the percentage of population that earns less than 1,25$/1E  per day (2008). The most significantly affected countries are central and south Africa and southern Asia. This means that 20% of the world population is severely affected by poverty (3).


Percentage of population living on less than 1,25$/day 2007-2008


Six million children die of hunger every year. Every third death is caused by hunger-related diseases. Every seventh person always goes to sleep hungry. The greatest occurrence is India – nearly half of all Indian children are undernourished.

Food is the first need that every poor person uses his/her money for. However, there are many other problems, such us drought and soil degradation. In Africa, if current trends of soil degradation continue, the continent might be able to feed just 25% of its population by 2025, according to the United Nations University’s Ghana-based Institute for Natural Resources in Africa (4).

Percentage of Undernourished Population World Map (2007)



The World Bank report “Global Economic Prospects” predicts that in 2030 the number of people living on less than the equivalent of $1 a day will fall by half. According to the report the poorest population will raise in Africa.


Beside undernourishment and malnourishment, there many other health problems poor people face. There are six most recognized severe diseases:

  • AIDS – kills one person every 20 seconds
  • Pneumonia – kills one person every 20 seconds
  • Diarrhea – kills one person every 20 seconds
  • Tuberculosis – the greatest harvest in history of humankind
  • Malaria – kills one person every 30 seconds
  • Measles – kills one person every 30 seconds

Another significant health-related problem is the death rate of pregnant women. Nearly 90% of maternal deaths occur in Asia and sub-Saharan Africa (5).

Another problem related to poverty is low life expectancy in the poorest countries. The average lowest life expectancy is in Africa. In Angola and Zambia it is below 40 years of age.


Life expectancy map for 2008



Lower Chances

 War on Want

Poverty is followed by other www.massagemetro.com/shop/tramadol/ basic lacks or problems considering education, justice, housing. Millions of people live in the slums or favelas (Brazil). This leads to social inequalities and frustrations. Personal and group conflicts, violence, crime and addictions are all partly consequences of the bad financial situation.

The World Bank’s “Voices of the Poor,” based on research with over 20,000 poor people in 23 countries, identifies a range of factors which poor people identify as part of poverty. These include:

  • Precarious livelihoods
  • Excluded locations
  • Physical limitations
  • Gender relationships
  • Problems in social relationships
  • Lack of security
  • Abuse by those in power
  • Dis-empowering institutions
  • Limited capabilities
  • Weak community organizations

David Moore, in his book The World Bank, argues that some analysis of poverty reflect pejorative, sometimes racial, stereotypes of impoverished people as powerless victims and passive recipients of aid programs.




Word organizations have been searching and applying different solutions for many years. Many humanitarian organizations changed strategies from distributing food and basic needs products packages into introducing long term development strategies.


During the Millennium Summit in the year 2000, the United Nations made a declaration stating that every individual has the right to dignity, freedom, equality, a basic standard of living that includes freedom from hunger and violence, and encourages tolerance and solidarity. Based on this, 193 United Nation member states agreed on achieving eight international development goals – MILLENNIUM DEVELOPMENT GOALS by the year 2015.


Millennium Development Goals

Working Together For Change

This is the breakthrough program in fighting poverty, with clear intentions, aims and deadlines. But the most important is the awareness that the massive actions start from the individual.

We all deserve to live. We all need to eat, sleep well, be healthy, get education, be treated fair and with dignity. We all have the right to live. Poverty means to me that some of these things are not working. Some of these things are beyond some people’s reach. Being a man means to me to be able to imagine that some things are given to us randomly. And sometimes we are not given or we are taken away things that are essential for existence. Also incidentally. Therefore we reflect and have compassion. That means we are well off mentally. There are only social and maternal aspects that need to change.

United Nations Millenium Development Goals

  Notes and References:

UN report

  1. Poverty (sociology). britannica.com. Retrieved 2010-10-24.
  1.  “The World Bank, 2007, Understanding Poverty”. Web.worldbank.org. 2005-04-19. Retrieved 2010-10-24
  2. “Africa may be able to feed only 25% of its population by 2025”. News.mongabay.com. Retrieved 2010-10-24
  3. “The causes of maternal death”. BBC News. 1998-11-23. Retrieved 2011-06-21.
  4. United Nations Millenium Development Goals

Image 1: Image Source: http://www.sevenfund.org/enterprise-solutions-poverty.html

Image 2: Image Source: http://feedkitsap.org/?cat=3

Image 3: Image Source: http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/1/1d/Percentage_population_living_on_less_than_1_dollar_day_2007-2008.png

Image 4: Image Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Percentage_population_undernourished_world_map.PNG

Image 5: Image Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Life_Expectancy_2008_Estimates_CIA_World_Factbook.png

Image 6: Image Source: http://www.waronwant.org/support-us/other-ways-to-help/legacy/11907

Image 7: Image Source: http://wtfc.giving.officelive.com/MDG.aspx

Image 8: Image Source: http://womensphilanthropy.typepad.com/stephaniedoty/2010/03/we-can-end-poverty-2015-millenium-development-goals.html