War on Want: Targeting the Root Causes of Global Poverty

Many organizations that work towards ending global poverty focus on the effects that occur due to poverty, such as housing and food insecurity. However, the organization War on Want targets the causes of poverty such as human rights violations, conflict, and worker’s rights.

Defining The War on Want

The War on Want proclaims “We’re different!” and states, “We are a charity, but we aren’t an aid agency and we don’t impose solutions to poverty.” The organization fosters cooperation between its partners, long-term solutions and combatting the root of poverty: “wealthy elites…governments, wealthy corporations and others.”

This organization has three main objectives in making their goal possible:

  • Global partnerships to target the root causes of global poverty
  • Campaigns against causes of poverty
  • Efforts to raise public awareness about the causes and effects of poverty

Healing Political Turmoil

With War on Want’s multiple focus areas, the organization is constantly in the news for various actions relating to their organization. Staff for the organization writes news articles about grassroots campaigns taking place in the U.K., and the latest article written by War on Want’s executive director focused on the grassroots marches around the United Kingdom.

These marches — and the subsequent article — address xenophobia in the country, and how inequality and injustice need to be addressed because xenophobia and other political concerns “threaten us all.”

Such writings relate to War on Want’s mission of addressing the root causes of global poverty by focusing on political turmoil and human rights violations.

Fighting the Patriarchy

The War on Want’s press officer, Marienna Pope-Weidemann writes how “women are the hardest hit by poverty and human rights abuses.” She addresses how empowering women and noticing how women are taking the charge in social justice movements helps resolve poverty around the world.

By empowering women to take agency in their lives, even in very patriarchal societies, the globe can better work together on the root causes of poverty revolving around underrepresented groups of people.

Addressing Conflict

War on Want Militarism and Security Campaigns officer Ryvka Barnard wrote on Israel’s ban list and the organizations work for justice in Palestine. During the transition of the U.S. embassy to Jerusalem, there was upheaval, protests and violence.

Due to this, Israel created a ban list of organizations that are not allowed to enter the borders that revolve around human rights violations. As Barnard states, “Banning entry to those who stand up for human rights is a way Israel tries to isolate Palestinians and to keep others from supporting them.”

Combatting Poverty

Poverty has erupted in occupied territories as a result of these measures of Palestinian segregation. Conflict and land isolation led to food insecurity and loss of homes. Now, with this ban list, the Palestinians are even more separated and have little ability of support from charities and solidarity groups that support their needs for basic human rights.

Overall, the War on Want addresses the root causes of global poverty by fighting for the basic needs of the individual, and addressing politics, conflict, land issues, women rights and many other tactics to break down why poverty occurs.

– Jenna Walmer
Photo: Flickr