Global Poverty

How Can We Help People Struggling in the World; Poverty Hurts so Many?

Around the world, poverty affects many people in more ways than we think. It means more than just not having enough money; poverty includes a lack of access to food, water and education. It means social discrimination and exclusion. In 2015, 10 percent of the world’s population lived in extreme poverty, butSouthern Asia and sub-Saharan Africa are expected to experience the largest increases in extreme poverty, with millions more people falling below the international poverty line.[1]

Asia and Africa are two areas in the world where GFA World focuses its efforts. With growing numbers of people falling into poverty in those areas, GFA’s work is more important than ever. GFA trains national missionaries to serve those in need in their own countries. They can help provide practical assistance for the poor such as income-generating gifts, literacy training, clean water, vocational training and more. GFA works to combat the alarming statistics. This work is changing lives, Sahlma is one example.

Sahlma was nine when an earthquake destroyed her village. Most of her family’s possessions were destroyed, and there remained little opportunity to earn money in the rubble. Sahlma’s parents had to find work in a nearby town, leaving Sahlma—still a child herself—to look after her two younger siblings. Even with her parents sending money, there wasn’t enough for food, so Sahlma began working as a porter to earn more. Being a porter involved traveling over rugged mountain terrain with a loaded basket on her back. On average, these women porters can carry 70 percent of their body weight.[2]

The hard labor took its toll on the girl, and Sahlma lost her smiling face, but she had no choice; she had to feed her siblings. Then, staff from GFA’s Child Sponsorship Program, who were operating in the town where her parents worked, learned about the family’s difficult circumstances. They enrolled Sahlma in the sponsorship program, which provided education assistance, school supplies and nutritious food. With that burden lifted, the family could afford to feed the younger two kids, and Sahlma didn’t have to work anymore. The kids were able to join their parents in the new town, and Sahlma now had a future full of hope, many opportunities opened as she thrived in her studies.[3] God’s people showing her love changed everything, and Sahlma saw how much God loves her.

GFA’s Child Sponsorship program is just one of many ways that we seek to alleviate the effects of poverty in the world; read more about global poverty and GFA’s work. Without help, these harmful cycles will continue, where poverty closes opportunities, which leads to poverty.

Consider supporting GFA in this important work.

Learn more about global poverty

[1] “Ending Poverty.” United Nations. Accessed October 14, 2022.
[2] Sohn, Emily. “How does a Nepalese porter carry so much weight?” National Public Radio. March 12, 2017.
[3] “A Burden Slides off Preteen Girl’s Back.” GFA World. January 2022.