Lives of children in poverty set to worsen
Sub-Saharan kids will account for 90 percent of global total by 2030
THERE are more poor children in sub-Saharan Africa than any other region in the world, with these youngsters making up a staggering 53 percent of the global total.
These startling figures are part of a recent study commissioned by Save the Children from the Overseas Development Institute (ODI).
According to the report titled “Child poverty, inequality and demography” the levels of poverty are only expected to get worse for the children living in this region, which includes South Africa.
It is expected that by the year 2030, the youngsters in this region will account for 90 percent of the the 167 million children globally living on less than the threshold for measuring extreme poverty which is a meagre $1.90 a day or roughly about R25.83.
Meanwhile, kids in south Asia are the second most affected by poverty as they make up 32 percent of the global total.
According to the study, it is estimated that more than three-quarters of a billion (767 million) people were estimated by the World Bank to be extremely poor in 2013, of which 385 million (half) are children.
“Because poorer families have more children, children are twice as likely as adults to live in extreme poverty, with extreme poverty rates of 19.5 percent for children, against 9.2 percent for adults,” the report found.
The chief executive of Save the Children South Africa Gugu Ndebele reiterated that child poverty was a vicious cycle.
Being poor makes it less likely that you’ll learn in school, more likely that you’ll fall ill, and exposes children to much higher risks of neglect, abuse and exploitation disadvantages that millions of children carry into adulthood and pass on to the next generation.”
She added that this was unfair and hugely costly for societies.
“As our 2016 costing study revealed, violence against children costs South Africa billions of rands in GDP each
There is no excuse for any child to grow up in poverty
Ndebele said smart investments were a way to break the cycle of poverty.
“By making smart investments now, we can break the intergenerational poverty trap, and lay the foundations for a more stable and prosperous world. In an age of unprecedented resources and know-how, there is no excuse for any child to grow up in poverty.”
The report comes ahead of this week’s annual gathering of world leaders in Davos, Switzerland, at the World Economic Forum, where the theme is Responsive and Responsible Leadership.
The need for an intensified focus on the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals, including the eradication of poverty, is expected to be an important part of the discussions ahead of a year of political and economic uncertainty.
NO END: Homeless people living under Lansdowne Bridge spoke about how they ended up on the streets and how they would be spending Christmas. In the picture is 4-year-old Asia van Reenen.