Do you ever feel powerless to help with major issues such as global poverty? Chin up! We are now in an age where technology can be used to eliminate poverty and there is so much that you, the individual, can do.
Poverty is one of our biggest global problems. I say ‘our’ because long gone are the days where I feel separate from other people. Ultimately every choice the individual makes impacts the whole; that’s ALL of us including our environment.
The facts are that 1.3 billion people live on less than $1.25 per day which is considered to be extreme poverty and 3 billion people live on less than $2.50 per day. It is hard to see those figures and know how many folk go without food and clean water but it does not have to be this way, we can do something to change this.
3 billion people (that’s half the worlds population) live on less than $2.50 a day
There are many amazing groups working with technology to change global poverty and by working with them you can make a massive difference in the lives of many.
Using Technology to Eliminate Poverty
Micro-finance: is one of the wonderful platforms technology has allowed us, in order to empower people in developing countries to support themselves. Micro-financing involves small loans of between $70 – $100 that go directly to women living below the poverty line. With such a loan women are able to either purchase seeds for farming, a sewing machine for clothing production, or any other tool required to begin a small business for themselves. With technology, people with the means to do so, you and me are able to send small amounts of money to women in developing countries; who can then go on to build a sustainable business for themselves and for their families. If you’re interested in investing in women’s futures (which also finances the education of their children) check out Opportunity, End Poverty or Kiva – providing $25 loans to help people start a sustainable business.
Fair Trade: By supporting products that are proudly labeled fair trade you are ensuring that farmers are being paid for their service. More often than not its our ‘luxury’ items such as coffee and chocolate that have a higher proportion of farmers who are not paid adequately for their labour. Check out the Fair Trade website for products on their buy list.
Businesses also have to be accountable for ensuring that their products are sourced from factories where the workers are paid appropriately and have a safe work environment. Oxfam Australia is one group that puts pressure on corporations to improve the lives of workers. If you’re interested in lessening poverty through the support of adequate wages use your technology, go to their website: Demand Safety for Textile Workers in Bangladesh and pass on your digital signature.
Australian clothing companies that do and do not support fair trade:
Technology can absolutely be used to serve humanity in the process of reducing and eliminating poverty. The best thing is that you can do something right now to make a difference.