1 in 5 people on the planet live on less than $1.25 a day, making extreme poverty one of the world's most pressing issues. Tackling poverty requires a holistic approach that addresses its interconnected challenges. Here's how you can help make a difference and be part of the solution.
Step 1: Learn the facts Learn the facts. Health problems are major impediments to development; each year, complications during pregnancy and childbirth kill 300,000 mothers in developing countries, for example, and malaria infects hundreds of millions of people. But even small donations can make a big impact — roughly $10 buys a mosquito net that protects a sleeping site for 5 years, while $35 supports a midwife for a week in sub-Saharan Africa, allowing women to receive vital medical care. Another crucial challenge to reducing poverty is to increase food production while protecting and rehabilitating the environment. Make a contribution to further this goal: just $20 can plant 10 seedlings in a community, while $30 can help to purchase fertilizer for smallholder farming. Education and gender equality are critical to ending poverty, but over 100 million children lack a primary school education and 3/4 of the world’s 800 million illiterate adults are women. Help reduce these statistics: $40 can cover a student’s secondary school education for a month in sub-Saharan Africa, and $50 provides a child’s school meals for a year, helping to promote school attendance. Enhanced infrastructure — better roads, cleaner water, improved sanitation, and expanded access to electrical grids and information and communication technologies — also fosters development. Get involved and help improve the life of family — as little as $20 can purchase an energy-efficient cookstove, and $40 can provide a lantern for a home that does not have electrical lighting.
Step 2: Spread the word Spread the word to drive awareness and make an even greater impact. Organize a letter-writing campaign to Congress, post news items and calls to action on social media, circulate an online petition, plan a fundraising party, create a social-networking group -- anything that helps focus attention on global poverty. Try to highlight the positive -- sharing success stories can help motivate other people to take action themselves.
TIP: You can get involved with an organization like Millennium Promise, which is dedicated to tackling poverty from many angles.
Step 3: Take a collaborative approach Don't let poverty overwhelm you. Collaborate with others to make a bigger impact; working together, even small actions can make an enormous difference -- not only in reducing extreme poverty, but ending it altogether.
For more information on how you can get involved, visit "millenniumpromise.org":http://millenniumpromise.org/.