Poverty is more than the absence of money and possessions.
Of the 2.2 billion children on earth, 1 billion – nearly every second child – live in poverty. Poverty deprives children of nutrition, water and sanitation, access to basic healthcare, shelter, education, participation and protection. While poverty hurts everyone, it affects children the most, leaving them unable to claim their rights, reach their full potential and participate as full members of society.
Children the Hardest Hit
Childhood is the most crucial development period in a person's life – it's when our main physical, mental, emotional and social development takes place. So when children experience poverty, it can have lasting consequences into adult life. Yet children are:
- over-represented among the population experiencing poverty
- the hardest hit by poverty within poor families
- often undervalued in terms of their potential and ability to contribute to social, family, economic and community life.
Child Rights and Poverty
Poverty, especially child poverty, is a cause and consequence of the denial of rights.
We support children and their communities to develop the structures and skills they need to overcome poverty. We don't give handouts – instead we work with them to find sustainable solutions. If people are empowered to create change, it's possible to break the poverty cycle.
Children are a critical part of this process. We listen to what children have to say about their rights, needs and concerns, and help them to take an active role in finding solutions to their problems.
That's why child rights are at the centre of all that we do.