Chile is an elongated country in South America, located adjacent to the Pacific Ocean. According to the Central Intelligence Agency, as of June 2016 the population in Chile was 17,650,114, which is about 5.3 percent of the population of South America.
About 14 percent of this Spanish-speaking nation is below the poverty rate. Although the government has been working to improve conditions and livelihoods for Chile’s residents, the anti-poverty organizations currently in place have not been particularly helpful.
United Nations Special Rapporteur, Philip Alston, stated that Chile “continues to tolerate levels of poverty and inequality which are very high for a country belonging to the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD).”
Chile needs support in the areas of education, income equality and human rights in order to prosper in today’s society. Here are just a few ways to help people in Chile:
In Chile, 99.5 percent of the population speaks Spanish, whereas 10.2 percent speak English. In a changing global society, Chile has realized that it is important to educate children in the English language so that they can be more communicative and productive in their future endeavors.
The English Open Doors Program is an organization that is looking for English teachers to volunteer four months of their time in Chile. Literacy rates in Chile are already very high – 96 percent – and therefore just need a little extra help to become extremely successful.
2. Equality For All
Gender inequality in the workforce is a huge issue in Chile. Alston says, “Women’s participation in the workforce needs to be facilitated by a range of measures that include better community care facilities, and better economic rewards for currently unpaid female care workers.”
To help eliminate this discrimination in the workforce, labor laws and reform programs are needed. If you’re wondering how to help people in Chile with this issue even though you live thousands of miles away, there is a simple solution: advocating. Even though you may not be able to picket on Chilean streets, you can raise awareness by posting signs around town, for instance, and getting people to talk about this issue.
3. Human Rights
Aside from the inequality in the workplace in Chile, discrimination in regards to human rights has also been a pressing issue. According to Alston, “There is a deep need for an entity with the responsibility, authority, funds and resources to coordinate government-wide human rights policies.”
Whether this is in regard to sexual education for young women or protection rights for the poorest in Chile, “Mr. Alston called for a specific, integrated plan to tackle both poverty and extreme poverty and for more effective coordination mechanisms.”
Chile’s government and reform programs have been working hard to reduce inequalities and human rights issues, but have so far proven to be insufficient. Are you wondering how to help people in Chile with these issues? The simplest way to work toward equality and peace in Chile is to raise awareness of these problems. Post signs on the walls of your local coffee shop, talk to your co-workers or even contact your congressional leaders about supplying aid to the Chilean people who need it most.
– Sydney Missigman