Two children posing for the camera

The human cost of the Covid 19 pandemic

The Covid 19 pandemic has deeply impacted the world’s poor. Where poverty was declining prior to 2020, in many parts of the world new data now shows that we are further from eradicating poverty than we have ever been. The World Bank estimate between 88 and 115 million people are being pushed into poverty as a result of the crisis, with the majority of the new extreme poor being found in South Asian and Sub-Saharan countries where poverty rates are already high.

At World Villages for Children we hear first hand from the children in our programmes overseas the enormous cost of this pandemic on the lives and livelihoods of their families and communities and the desperate need to address this humanitarian disaster.

Dry sandy land

Enduring Hardship

The poorest communities have been the most exposed to the health crisis, they have no access to health care or medical supplies and many impoverished family members have lost their lives. Many have also lost their entire living, as informal unskilled work, most often the sole source of a meagre income for these families, has dried up.

Their families continue to be the hardest hit. They are hungry, lack shelter, dignity and are increasingly exposed to violence which particularly affects younger women. The family have low levels of education, they are not skilled for alternative, better paid work and have no buffer of savings to keep them sustained during this or any crisis. Without the most basic infrastructure to accommodate working from home or remote learning for their children, the worst economic effects of the pandemic still await these families further into the future.

The Effects of Climate Change increase poverty

Families living in extreme poverty also have greater vulnerability to the impact of climate change. This threat is acute in our areas of work, particularly within the rural communities of Sub-Saharan Africa. Extreme weather events including flooding and drought, cause devastating chaos and loss of livelihoods for families who rely on the land for survival and greater susceptibility to life ending climate related diseases like Malaria.

Girls in class writing at their desks

Education is the key to poverty reduction

Quality education for the poorest communities in the world is the key to eradicating poverty. With your help at World Villages for Children we continue our urgent mission to welcome as many poor children into our care as funds allow. Each year almost 20,000 boys and girls from the poorest and most remote communities in the world now have access to shelter, food, a quality education and technical training at the Sisters of Mary programmes.

Safe in school the children thrive and their studies, which are tailored to local vacancies, lead the children into stable employment and financial independence. In turn, they are able to support their families and loved ones with access to healthcare, education and ultimately out of poverty, but there are so many more children in need. Millions of vulnerable children who remain out of school, living in desperate poverty, exposed to violence, severe hunger and without the means to make a better life for themselves.