The Perpetuation of Poverty: A Series on What We Can Do for Others
"Poverty is Biblical"
While I’m writing this, I’m thinking about the conversation I had with someone a few months back. I quote, “You do not blame anyone, including the government and the people behind the leaders. Poverty, chaos, war, and now the pandemic is worldwide. These things are like change; it is inevitable—no leader in this world can scrape out poverty because poverty is Biblical.” This person went on talk about how in the bible poverty was already there and therefore there is practically nothing we can do about it. I’ve made a screenshot of this and have kept it on my phone to look at every time I need to be reminded of what it is that we are doing.
Be the person who holds on to hope for others
Some people go out onto the world and do the best they can to change other people’s lives for the better. Others just accept it, embrace it on behalf of the poor, and thank god that they had been blessed with a better life. Every time we talk to a child in one of the communities we support, we always ask what they want to be when they grow up. They give you different answers and career choices, but you can always see that they want a better life for themselves and their families. What happened to us as we were growing older that we abandoned this hope? Not for ourselves but for others who are still hopeful of a better life. I look at that message and remind myself that I don’t want to be that person that completely accepts the despair of others as a condition to being alive here on earth and not do anything to inspire hope even in the lives of a few.
We have the power to promote progress
Unlike before, we now have more ways of helping others. We are born in a time when we finally have a way to contribute to noble causes and organizations that have proven to have helped countless lives. We have the power to do it ourselves. And we can finally share with others our advocacy through the internet and social media and inspire them to find theirs. In our own ways, we selflessly rally to help a person, a family, or an entire community in times of crisis and despair. We are the people who still hold on to the hope that one day every child gets an equal chance at a good life.
Poverty Begets Poverty
I have always believed that we can’t fight poverty as it stands. We want to address the consequences of poverty that proliferate in new generations, and help end the cycle for more and more people. An article published on concernusa.org lists 11 causes of global poverty. Among them are inequality, hunger and malnutrition, poor healthcare systems, poor public works and infrastructure, lack of social support systems, and lack of education. These are a few of the causes of poverty, and they are also the outcomes of being extremely poor. Millions of people in the country are trapped in this vicious cycle. We, as private citizens, can only do so much. I refuse to believe that the government has no responsibility in even improving people’s chances for a better life.
Education is the Great Equalizer
With a good education, people can find more and better opportunities. Although not every person without an education is living in extreme poverty, most adults living in extreme poverty did not receive a quality education. We have always advocated for better access to quality education for children in marginalized communities—communities below the poverty line with zero or limited access to electricity and the internet. And we will continue to do so for this is the ultimate purpose of what we do.
Make Ripples of Kindness
Beyond the lives that we are living now, we have a role to play in the lives of our friends, family members, and strangers whom we may never meet. Unbeknownst to you, your small acts of kindness will make endless ripples that will go on to touch the lives of many. We may not end poverty in our lifetime, but we can empower children to give it their best in theirs.
In this series, we will talk about poverty as more than a socio-economic status but also as a culture that has clung to our way of life, and how it has affected the way we see the world and our optimism toward ending it. If you have anything to share, please leave a comment below.