You have a pervading sense of shame and failure because you cannot provide for your children. Your poverty traps you and you lose hope of ever escaping from a life of hard work for which, at the end, you will have nothing to show beyond bare survival.
The number of people currently living in such conditions is 1.4 billion. This is bad, but not as bad as things were in 1981, when there were 1.9 billion people living in extreme poverty. That was about 4 in every 10 people in the world, whereas now fewer than 1 in 4 are extremely poor.
UNICEF, the United Nations International Children’s Emergency Fund, estimates that about 24,000 children die every day from preventable, poverty-related causes.
Personal finance is not just about living within a budget and making sensible steps to make safe financial decisions (safe investment portfolio, proper insurance, adequate savings, emergency fund) it is also about using your finances appropriately for you. I believe strongly in helping those that have not been as lucky to have the opportunities I have economically.
Some of my favorite ways to help reduce extreme poverty are Trickle Up, Kiva and using Global Giving to find small organizations (like the Anupshahar’s Girls School, Build Women’s Fair Trade Businesses, Profit for Poor Farmers, and Vegetable Gardens for India). I encourage you to join me: let me know if you contribute to Kiva and I will add your Kiva page to our list of Curious Cat Kivans. Also join the Curious Cats Kiva Lending Team (I am happy to say we have made over $7,500 in loans so far).
If you like that webcast you will like The Girl Effect.
Related: Creating a World Without Poverty – Financial Thanksgiving – 100th Micro Finance Entrepreneur Loan (I am not over 200) – 2006 Nobel Peace Prize to Founder of Micro-finance Bank – High School Team Project to Provide Clean Water