In Battling Poverty, Organizations Fight Many Fronts

There is no one solution to the problem of poverty in this world. Poverty can be found on nearly every continent and in most countries at some level.1 This means that addressing the problem and loosening poverty’s grip will take multiple solutions, and the help of multiple governments and organizations. Knowing what different poverty organizations do can help supporters choose how to join the fight against this thief of futures and well-being.

Illiteracy and poor education are widely regarded as the chief causes of trapping generations in poverty. In a 2018 World Development Report, the World Bank stated,

“Worldwide, hundreds of millions of children reach young adulthood without even the most basic life skills… This learning crisis is a moral crisis. When delivered well, education cures a host of societal ills. For individuals, it promotes employment, earnings, health, and poverty reduction.”2

This is why many poverty organizations have literacy programs that give education access to the most vulnerable groups, especially in places like South Asia and sub-Saharan Africa.

According to UNICEF, one of many international poverty organizations, children are among the most vulnerable groups in society. One billion children are multidimensionally poor, meaning they go without adequate access to basic needs like education, health, housing, nutrition, sanitation or water.3 This brings to light the many fronts of destitution to be addressed by organizations that help poverty. Just focusing on one aspect, like literacy, will not provide the overall lift needed.

Better health – which is closely tied to nutrition, sanitation and water quality – also provides a more steady path out of poverty. A typical scenario of poverty includes a family with no options for clean water. The family experiences ongoing illness from waterborne diseases that keep the parents out of work and the children out of school. This exemplifies the cyclical nature of poverty and its many issues. Without a healthy, educated next generation, there can be no future for millions of children.

The COVID-19 pandemic has only served to jeopardize more children. UNICEF and Save the Children reported that the pandemic added an additional 15 percent to the 1 billion already in crisis.4

Henrietta Fore, UNICEF Executive Director said:

“COVID-19 and the lockdown measures imposed to prevent its spread have pushed millions of children deeper into poverty. Families on the cusp of escaping poverty have been pulled back in, while others are experiencing levels of deprivation they have never seen before.”5

Ajia witnessed this firsthand. At only 13 years of age, Ajia was the sole caretaker of her two younger brothers at home. Their parents had left for a different country to work and had been sending home money. Then the pandemic hit, and Ajia’s parents were without work and no money was being sent home. Ajia had nothing with which to support her brothers.6

GFA missionaries in the area knew of the plight of people like Ajia and her brothers. They distributed groceries and supplies. This kind of care keeps girls like Ajia from resorting to a lifestyle on the streets.

“Thank you for your love and care toward us,” Ajia said. “You are the one who knew about our situation and fulfilled our needs.”7

This was a temporary solution to a situation that would not have a quick resolution. To continue to keep children like Ajia safe, a longer-lasting solution is needed. This is why child sponsorship programs are so important.

A poverty relief organization like GFA can provide a direct, ongoing way to support vulnerable children like Ajia and her brothers. Though immediate crisis intervention is still needed, it is the daily intervention of sponsorship programs that begin to lift families.

GFA’s child sponsorship program seeks to address many of the cyclical issues mentioned in this article, such as provision of clean water, educational support with tutoring and school supplies, nutritional support, and financial support with the provision of toiletries and household items, among other essentials. It’s this kind of stability that can help prevent some of the worst effects of the pandemic on vulnerable families.

For just $35 a month per child, GFA takes a community-development-based approach to its child sponsorship program. GFA can also provide training to adults in search of skills for better employment. This makes GFA one of the best choices when looking to donate to poverty organizations.

Your gift today and each month fights back against the thief of poverty, giving your sponsored child the hope of tomorrow and giving the community a future generation of leaders.

Learn more about the causes of poverty

1 “World Poverty Map – How Many People Live in Extreme Poverty by Country.” Accessed February 2, 2022.
2 “Poverty and Shared Prosperity: Reversals of Fortune.” The World Bank. 2020.
3 Child Poverty Programme. UNICEF. Accessed February 2, 2022.
4 “150 Million Additional Children Plunged into Poverty due to COVID-19, UNICEF, Save the Children Say.” UNICEF and Save the Children, press release. September 16, 2020.
5 “150 Million Additional Children Plunged into Poverty due to COVID-19, UNICEF, Save the Children Say.” UNICEF and Save the Children, press release. September 16, 2020.
6 Trafficking Grows As Young VictimsRemain Hidden in Pandemic’s Shadow. Patheos. January 14, 2022.
7 Trafficking Grows As Young VictimsRemain Hidden in Pandemic’s Shadow. Patheos. January 14, 2022.