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David Soler Crespo, Assistant of research of the Navarra Center for International Development (ICS-University of Navarra)
José Manuel Cuevas, Assistant of research of the Navarra Center for International Development (ICS-University of Navarra)
Five keys to combat poverty
Today, October 17, the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty has been officially celebrated since 1993. The commemoration, approved by the UN the previous year, has its origins in the 1987 protests in Paris in favor of the victims of poverty and violence called by the priest Joseph Wresinski, founder of the human rights movement ATD (Act for Dignity for All) Fourth World. Wresinski denounced that situations of extreme poverty give rise to human rights violations and, along these lines, the UN has drawn attention to the fact that poverty does not only refer to people's income, but to everything necessary for them to lead a dignified life at every stage, which includes, among others, the political context, the institutional capacity of their environment and access to basic rights and opportunities for participation, Education and employment. Below we highlight five keys to combating it.
Governance and absence of conflict. Although there are different ways of measuring poverty, for extreme poverty there is a consensus around the World Bank standard, which is an income per person of less than US$1.90 per day. core topic One factor in combating poverty is governance, since it is through the institutional capacity of the State that freedoms and respect for human rights are guaranteed. In this sense, although peace does not necessarily mean that there is no poverty, violence and wars, in addition to causing deaths, give rise to situations of extreme poverty due to the loss of goods and services, which in many cases lead to displacement.
issue According to data of the World Bank's own Poverty and Equity Portal , between now and 2030, the number of people living in extreme poverty status will be reduced in South and East Asia, the Pacific and Latin America. However, it is expected to increase in sub-Saharan Africa, where it is estimated that by 2030 nine out of ten people in the world will live in this status. In the latter case, it is also the region most affected, along with Asia, by corruption and lack of democracy, from agreement with Transparency International's 2017 Corruption Perceptions Index and Freedom House's 2018 Freedom in the World report , respectively.
Investment in health. In order to combat (or prevent) extreme poverty and as a starting point for people to lead a decent life, it is necessary to guarantee access to health and provide coverage of minimum services. For example, according to the World Health Organization, 56% of deaths on the African continent could have been avoided, as they were caused by health issues related to communicable, maternal, neonatal and nutritional situations, avoidable through access to drinking water, the ability to acquire food and access to a good health system.
Education. The Education is a human right that must be guaranteed to all equally. In the countries at development the fees of schooling has increased, but now efforts must focus on extending the issue of school years and guaranteeing quality access, translated into textbooks, quantity and quality of teachers, among others.
In addition, it is important to provide resources to parents so that they do not need their children's labor at work and to make them aware that schooling is profitable. For example, a recent study by the Navarra Center for International Development sample shows that in Guatemala, for each year of schooling, income increases by 6% and, if they finish higher education Education , income can be 113% higher than for those who do not finish.
On the other hand, only in Western Europe and North America do the majority of adolescents (71%) continue studying after completing secondary school, while in Latin America only 38% and in sub-Saharan Africa only 6%.
Go beyond aid to development. Such aid is necessary in situations of poverty or where conflicts confine a population, which consequently cannot develop. However, such aid can be given in a more efficient way, since in many cases it must go through the government of the day, which distributes it between its own pockets and those most in need. Initiatives such as GiveDirectly, for example, seek to eliminate these barriers and get the money directly to those who need it.
Similarly, it is necessary to empower those without resources so that they can demonstrate their capabilities by providing them with study opportunities and employment. This requires, among other things, supporting schooling and investing in research, which will make it possible to move towards the end of extreme poverty in the long term deadline.
research. To eradicate extreme poverty, it is necessary to know how to measure it, quantify it and find solutions based on reality. The applied research is necessary to evaluate the impact of certain policies of financial aid at development and to analyze if they are applicable to other countries in case they are successful.
For example, through the research of the physician Fernando Mönckeberg, it was discovered that in the first thousand days of a newborn, nutrition is core topic for the development of the brain, since this is when it develops the most, at a rate of two milligrams per minute. If the brain is not 'nourished' in this first phase, it can grow atrophied, with anatomical, functional, biochemical, electrical and metabolic sequelae, marking the person for the rest of his or her life if he or she survives.