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Global Poverty Statistics
According to the Global Poverty Statistics for 2013, nearly half of the world’s population, (that’s more than 3 billion people,) can live on less than $2.50 a day. More than 1.3 billion live in extreme poverty, which is less than $1.25 a day.

As of 2013, according to the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization, there are roughly 870 million people on the planet who suffer from chronic malnourishment; this is a large part of what makes up global poverty. This means, that 1 in 8 people suffer from not having enough food to eat.

However, there was some good news for malnourished and impoverished people in Asia and the Pacific. Asia saw new socio-economic advancements in 2013, which decreased those who suffered from severe malnourishment by 30 percent.

Latin America and the Caribbean also saw improvements in 2013. The chronic malnourished of Latin America and the Caribbean fell from 65 million to 49 million. That means where there used to be 15 percent of the population suffering from undernourishment, there is now only 8 percent of the population suffering.

In Africa in 2013, however, the number of people hungry and chronically undernourished grew by 2 percent over the period of a year. The conditions of neither the African people nor their economic status has improved much in the past several years. In this case, the number of chronic malnourished people rose from 175 million in 2013, to 239 million in 2013.

More women are hungry than men; 60 percent of women go hungry to 40 percent of men. Many women who are pregnant will still be malnourished due to a lack of maternal care being offered in their countries. This means, annually, 240,000 women will die in childbirth.

According to global poverty statistics from UNICEF, one billion children in the world today are faced with extreme global poverty, and 22,000 will die each day due to the impoverished conditions of their countries.

Due to global poverty, many children and their families cannot afford vaccinations that would fight off and prevent disease. This means, thousands, if not millions, of children will die this year alone due to preventable causes such as malaria, polio or hunger.

As the World Food Programme said, “The poor are hungry and their hunger traps them in poverty.” Hunger is the number one cause of death in the world, killing more than HIV/AIDS, malaria and tuberculosis combined.

According to the global poverty statistics of 2013, malnourishment is one of the most dangerous things facing the world’s impoverished peoples. Starvation, malnourishment and unclean drinking water kill more people than almost anything else in the world. Every single one of those problems is preventable through advocacy and donations.

According to poverty facts, 1.6 billion people, or a quarter of the entire world’s population, lives without electricity in addition to facing extreme poverty and hardship.

The world’s poor should not have to live in a world of darkness and fear of where their next meal will come from. Every single problem the impoverished world faces can be prevented through advocacy and donations.

 — Cara Morgan

Sources: DoSomething, The Hunger Project, World Hunger
Photo: Flickr

katy_perry_concert
There are many ways that people try to make a difference in the fight against hunger in our country. One in every six Americans struggles to provide their families with nutritious food, and the ideas that people are coming up with to get the message out to the masses are becoming increasingly thoughtful and innovative. Now, the satellite radio audience will have the opportunity to take part in Hungerthon 2013, a joint initiative by SiriusXM and WhyHunger.

WhyHunger and the popular satellite radio service provider have teamed up to offer satellite radio listeners the opportunity to take part in the annual initiative to educate and build the movement to end hunger and poverty in the United States. Throughout the holiday season, satellite radio listeners will have a chance to bid on items being auctioned off on the SiriusXM website.

Some of the items auctioned off in support of this year’s Hungerthon include a Katy Perry autographed “California Dreams” Tour Jacket, a piano bench signed by Gavin DeGraw, an Al Merrick surfboard signed by Jimmy Buffett, and a Fender acoustic guitar signed by multiple artists including Neil Young, Willie Nelson, Dave Matthews, and Jack Johnson.

In collaboration with Hungerthon 2013, WhyHunger has also released an interactive music app called John Lennon: The Bermuda Tapes. The app provides users a look into John Lennon’s sailing journey to Bermuda that inspired the album “Double Fantasy.” Users can also hear unreleased demos and learn about different collaborations from the album. Net Proceeds from app purchases benefit WhyHunger and Hungerthon 2013.

Hungerthon has been raising funds and challenging the idea that anyone should go hungry through its national radio campaign for 28 years. Through the power of music and sensational involvement from prominent figures in the music industry, Hungerthon’s important message has been communicated to millions.

Daren Gottlieb

Sources: Hungerthon, WhyHunger, SiriusXM
Photo: Saucy Sprinkles

government_shutdown
The U.S. government shutdown 2013 is costing taxpayers an estimated $300 million dollars a day, according to HIS Global Insight. This cost just covers the economic loss from government worker furloughs. However, if the United States spent this $300 million on resources and technology for the developing world instead, this is what could be done:

  • 150,000,000 life straws could be distributed, which would provide direct clean drinking water to developing countries.
  • 6,000,000 starving children could receive Plumpy’nut, a malnutrition supplement, for two months.
  • 4,000,000 Hippo Rollers, a wheelbarrow like water carrying system could be delivered to developing countries, allowing for water to be carried more efficiently and preventing injury from carrying water.
  • 545,454,545 Unijet vaccines, disposable vaccines that avoid reuse of unsterile needles, could be provided – they are so simple to use that they require no training to administer.
  • 15,000,000,000 Peepooples disposable waste bags that quickly turn waste into biodegradable material could be distributed. Peepooples prevent waste spreading and contaminating environments.

Keep in mind, this is estimated with just one day of losses from the government shutdown.

– Nicole Yancy

Sources: NBC News, Tree Hugger: Clean Water, Tree Hugger: Hippo Water Roller, PeePoople, WHO, Independent
Photo: International Business Times

water_cooperation
The struggle to access clean water in many developing nations is no secret.  Every year, between six to eight million people perish due to water-borne diseases or lack of water.  Another cause of concern lies in the fact that over two thirds of the global population lives on the driest half of earth.  Experts estimate that 2.5 billion people lack proper water sanitation, and another 783 million completely struggle to locate access to any source of water.

In response to these alarming facts, the United Nations has declared 2013 the UN International Year of Water Cooperation to bring a revitalized focus and attention to these water issues.  The purpose of using water as the year’s theme is to ignite change in this crisis.  The plan is to draw more attention to successful water projects that have worked in various areas in an attempt to spark innovation and spread ideas in areas needing water development.  Other initiatives in the Year of Water Cooperation include increasing water education, working with regional leaders to develop relationships focused on addressing issues, settling border disputes involving water, and fundraising and developing necessary legal limits.

The UN chose the name International Year of Water Cooperation to highlight the necessity of forming regional bonds and of leaders working together to address the problems.  The theme is meant to inspire countries to share and work as a team to save millions of lives.  Since there are many different cultural, political and social factors at play in this global issue, cooperation remains the key to moving forward.

This initiative was started back in December 2010, among a United Nations General Assembly delegation.  The idea began by thinking of water as a chain: connected by various water basins, rivers and groundwater flow all around the world.  One objective of the year is to increase collaboration over sharing these resources to reach a maximum number of people, effectively creating a chain reaction.

If the water initiative goes successfully, not only will millions of lives be saved from simple prevention of disease, diarrhea and dehydration, but conflicts over water and ethnic fighting will simultaneously decrease.  The UN chose a strikingly important issue to focus on during 2013, with the potential to make an impact on the lives of billions of people around the planet.

Allison Meade

Sources: UN News Centre, UN Water, United Nations
Photo: 

London Hunger Summit Funds $4 Billion
The London Hunger Summit this year encouraged global leaders to take a stand on global hunger and poverty and make a difference. As a result, by the end of the day, $4 billion of funding had been secured to go towards ending hunger and malnutrition across the world. The Summit was a global accomplishment, with donations coming from businesses, governments, charities, and foundations in many countries.

The money will be distributed to several different causes, and some countries specified where they would like their donations to be spent. For example, Australia asked that their $40 million donations go towards improving nutrition in the Pacific Ocean area, and the British company Del Agua’s $670 million donations will be spent throughout the following years on providing clean drinking water in Rwanda.

However, even though raising $4 billion is a huge accomplishment, the U.K. can still improve to do even more for the world’s poor by more closely monitoring donations to determine where they are most needed. Some donors are not as transparent as they should be when they give back, so the U.K. doesn’t have the best data to learn where those donations are going and how much is actually making it to the people who need help. By monitoring how much money is given and which areas are receiving the help, the U.K. can decide which areas still need assistance, therefore maximizing efficiency and helping the most people possible.

Katie Brockman

Source Huffington Post, The Guardian

world-water-day-2013-water-cooperation_opt
Is water a commodity or a human right? Too many people, governments, and institutions see water as something merely to be bought and sold, and not as something every person on earth needs for survival. Like food, health care, educational and economic opportunities, and many of the other things we write about on the blog, safe water is a human right and necessity.

Since 1993, the UN has designated March 22 as World Water Day. World Water Day serves to bring attention to, advocate for sustainable management of, and celebrate clean, fresh water.

2013 has also been designated the International Year of Water Cooperation, so this year’s World Water Day holds special significance. Events will be held across the globe to foster international cooperation around water. Because of the organization’s interdisciplinary approach to world problems, the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) will coordinate World Water Day on behalf of UN-Water.

World Water Day serves many purposes, including raising public awareness of water issues facing the globe and advocating for improvements in water management. Access to clean, safe drinking water is a major health concern among the world’s poorest populations. 88 percent of cases of diarrhea, the number one cause of death and illness in the world, are due to a lack of access to clean water and sanitation facilities. Almost a billion people do not have access to improved water sources, while 2.5 billion live without adequate sanitation facilities.

While the statistics are disturbing, we can do something to improve these conditions. World Water Day is an opportunity to learn about water issues and take action on behalf of those whose basic water needs are not being met. To learn more about World Water Day 2013 and the International Year of Water Cooperation, visit the UN’s World Water Day page.

– Kat Henrichs
Source: UN-Water
Photo:UN

Ashok Bharti inciting Bangladesh Crowd

Global Call to Action Against Poverty (GCAP) has a vision to eradicate global poverty. The organization is encouraging more dialogue and conversation about the Millennium Declaration Goals (MDGs) which came to fruition in 2000 and will expire in 2015. With two years left until the expiration of the MDGs, questions about the effectiveness of the Millennium Declaration Goals have been asked. The world is a very different place than it was 13 years ago. GCAP Global Council Co-Chair, Amitabh Behar explains, “Since the Millennium Declaration was drafted in 2000, our world has changed dramatically.”

Many people feel that by having early discussions the strength of the movement to end poverty will only grow. Having conferences such as this one in Dhaka, Bangladesh will bring to the forefront the main issues which need to be addressed in two years to assist in the process to eradicate global poverty. “I hope that your deliberations here in Dhaka will help shape a new world where justice, peace and equity will be the core of development,” Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina told the gathering. During the conference in Dhaka, one of the main topics addressed has been new solutions to eradicate global poverty.

One GCAP member at the conference believes once everybody is included and social exclusion is a concept of the past, the strength of the movement to end poverty will intensify. GCAP Global Council member Ashok Barti stated, “We want poverty and hunger to be eradicated from this world. Focusing on inequalities alone is not likely to address this issue. We need to keep exclusion at its center. The agenda of inequality in post-2015 needs to be focused on exclusion.”

Amitabh Behar believes that in order to make the end of poverty a reality, society must not be afraid to follow dreams and push to make this happen. Behar expresses, “We have often ended up with very pragmatic approaches [to development]. If we don’t bring back dreams to our narratives, it is unlikely we will have a fair and just world.” Seeing that organizations such as GCAP are pushing global poverty to the forefront two years before the United Nations conference commences is a positive step in the process to eradicate global poverty.

Varsha Dougba

Source: Huffington Post