Fidest – Agenzia giornalistica/press agency

Quotidiano di informazione – Anno 33 n° 338

Posts Tagged ‘poverty’

IFAD’s fight against rural poverty and hunger highlighted at One Planet Summit

Posted by fidest press agency su sabato, 16 gennaio 2021

Rome. In a move to sustainably address rising hunger and poverty, exacerbated by COVID-19, climate change and biodiversity loss, French President Emmanuel Macron called on global leaders to step up their commitments in support of long-term agricultural development.Earlier in the day, President Macron met with the IFAD’s UN Goodwill Ambassadors Idris Elba, actor, filmmaker and humanitarian, and Sabrina Dhowre Elba, actress, model and activist, who advocated for increased investments to rural populations, biodiversity and the fight against climate change.Three out of four of the world’s poorest people live in rural areas. A majority of them work in agriculture on small farms. While they produce 50 percent of the world’s food calories on only 30 percent of global agricultural land, many of them live in poverty and cannot feed their families. Hunger and poverty are on the rise due to conflict, climate change and the COVID-19 pandemic.IFAD is one of the world’s largest multilateral financiers of agriculture and rural development, active in remote, rural areas in almost 100 countries. For over 40 years, its work has shown that investing in rural areas promotes prosperity, food security and resilience to weather changes, natural disasters, price hikes and other shocks like the COVID-19 pandemic that can later lead to humanitarian crises. Research also shows that economic growth in agriculture is two to three times more effective at reducing poverty than growth in other sectors.IFAD has called on its Member States to significantly increase their contributions in support of its Twelfth Replenishment to deliver an overall programme of work of at least US$11 billion from 2022 to 2024, including through a new private sector financing programme and an expansion of its pioneering climate change adaptation programme (ASAP+). This would help approximately 140 million rural people increase their production and raise their incomes through better market access, contributing to creating jobs and improving food security and nutrition for the world’s most vulnerable people.France joins 25 other countries who have already pledged their contributions to IFAD’s Replenishment including increases from countries such as Burkina Faso, Côte d’Ivoire, Finland, The Gambia, Greece, Luxembourg, Mali, São Tomé and Príncipe, Sierra Leone, Sweden and Uganda. Significant pledges have also been made by the Netherlands and Japan. Many other countries have confirmed their intention to announce increased contributions at the main pledging session in February.

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Pope Francis joins 25 countries to fight against poverty and hunger in first round of pledges to IFAD

Posted by fidest press agency su lunedì, 14 dicembre 2020

Despite the economic consequences of COVID-19, a growing number of countries around the world today stepped up their investments in long-term development, signalling a greater awareness of the links between hunger, inequality and instability which often spark humanitarian crises. By pledging new funds to the UN’s International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), they committed to ensure hundreds of millions of rural people in some of the poorest countries can sustainably access nutritious food and earn decent incomes. These announcements were made at the first formal pledging session in support of IFAD’s Twelfth Replenishment – a process whereby Member States commit funds to the organization for its work in 2022-2024. Some of the world’s poorest countries were among the first to announce their commitments. Ahead of the pledging session, Pope Francis also indicated his support to IFAD through an unprecedented contribution from the Holy See. “As we globally battle the impacts of COVID-19 and a rapidly changing climate, our inter-dependence has never been clearer. It is essential to work together to transform our food systems and increase the prosperity and well-being of the world’s most vulnerable rural people, so that we can prevent mass migration and conflict, building a stable, peaceful world for all,” said Gilbert F. Houngbo, President of IFAD. “The pledges made today not only show the commitment of these nations to eradicate poverty and hunger, but are also a demonstration of their confidence in the impact of IFAD’s work.” These sentiments were echoed by Cardinal Pietro Parolin, the Secretary of State of His Holiness the Pope, in a statement. “We simply cannot keep silent in the face of so much suffering and adversity,” he said. “Today more than ever the international community must join forces to prepare for and achieve a future that is sustainable, inclusive and just for all. This is what we must do and it is within our reach: help the poorest and most vulnerable people of our world.”Sweden announced a pledge today that is 60 per cent higher than their last contribution. “Sweden remains firmly supportive of the important work that IFAD is undertaking to eradicate poverty and to strengthen sustainable food systems,” said Peter Eriksson, Sweden’s Minister for International Development Cooperation.Describing themselves as “proud to support IFAD,” the Netherlands also announced their significant pledge. “The Netherlands strongly values its partnership with IFAD in making a difference for rural people and food security and remains a dedicated donor in agricultural development to tackle poverty and hunger,” said Kitty van der Heijden, Director-General of International Cooperation at the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs. IFAD is one of the world’s largest multilateral financiers of agriculture and rural development, active in remote, rural areas in almost 100 countries. For over 40 years, its work has shown that investing in rural areas promotes prosperity, food security and resilience to weather changes, natural disasters, price hikes and other shocks like the COVID-19 pandemic that can later lead to humanitarian crises. Research also shows that economic growth in agriculture is two to three times more effective at reducing poverty than growth in other sectors.Many other Member States announced their intention to step up their contributions in this first pledging session. Finland raised its contribution by more than 40 per cent. Japan also made a significant pledge. Meanwhile Greece, Luxembourg, and São Tomé and Príncipe increased their contributions.Cabo Verde and other countries also pledged, joining those who announced contributions to IFAD earlier in the year including Burkina Faso, Côte d’Ivoire, and Mali who pledged to at least double their most recent contributions to IFAD, with large increases also coming from The Gambia, Sierra Leone and Uganda. Many other countries have confirmed their intention to announce increased contributions at the main pledging session in February 2021.IFAD has called for donors to significantly increase their contributions to deliver an overall programme of work of at least US$11 billion from 2022 to 2024, including through a new private sector financing programme and an expansion of its pioneering climate change adaptation programme (ASAP+). This would help approximately 140 million rural people increase their production and raise their incomes through better market access, contributing to creating jobs and improving food security and nutrition for the world’s most vulnerable people.IFAD is unique among international organizations in that far more of its Member States contribute to its core funding, including some of the world’s poorest countries, highlighting the value they place on the support they receive from the Fund.

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Eliminating poverty and hunger high on global agenda as countries pledge funds to IFAD

Posted by fidest press agency su mercoledì, 9 dicembre 2020

At a time when hunger and poverty are increasing due to conflict, climate change and the COVID-19 pandemic, some of the world’s poorest countries are the first to pledge funds to the UN’s International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) to support its work to ensure that the most vulnerable rural people can sustainably access nutritious food and decent incomes.Burkina Faso, Côte d’Ivoire, and Mali have pledged to at least double their most recent contributions to IFAD, with large increases also coming from The Gambia, Sierra Leone and Uganda, all in support of IFAD’s Twelfth Replenishment – a process whereby Member States commit funds to the organization for its work in 2022-2024. Argentina, Egypt, El Salvador, Mongolia, Myanmar and Nicaragua are also amongst the first countries to pledge funds. On 11 December, IFAD will host its first formal pledging session and it is calling on Member States to significantly increase their contributions to help achieve the goal of a world free from poverty and hunger by 2030.The Fund aims to double its impact by 2030, including through a new private sector financing programme and an expansion of its pioneering climate change adaptation programme (ASAP+). During the replenishment period (2022-2024) this would help approximately 140 million rural people increase their production and raise their incomes through better market access, contributing to creating jobs and improving food security and nutrition for the world’s most vulnerable people. This includes women, youth, Indigenous Peoples and people living with disabilities.Three out of four of the world’s poorest people live in rural areas. A majority of them work in agriculture on small farms. While they produce 50 per cent of the world’s food calories on only 30 per cent of global agricultural land, many of them live in poverty and cannot feed their families.This has been amplified by the COVID-19 pandemic which has led to restrictions in trade and movement, preventing farmers from planting and harvesting crops, and from accessing markets to sell their produce and buy inputs. Disruptions to domestic and international food supply chains have also put millions of rural livelihoods at risk.Research shows that economic growth in agriculture is two to three times more effective at reducing poverty than growth in other sectors. Investing in rural areas promotes prosperity, food security and resilience to weather changes, natural disasters, price hikes and other shocks. IFAD is amongst the world’s largest multilateral financiers of agriculture and rural development, active in almost 100 countries around the world.

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Second IFAD credit rating will help increase investments to fight poverty and hunger

Posted by fidest press agency su domenica, 22 novembre 2020

Rome. The prospect of eradicating hunger and poverty received a boost today as the UN’s International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) obtained its second strong public credit rating, facilitating its access to private funds to invest in increasing rural prosperity and development in the world’s poorest countries. The AA+ rating was announced today by Standard and Poor’s (S&P) Global Ratings. This complements the AA+ Fitch rating that IFAD received on 2 October, when IFAD became the first fund in the United Nations system to receive a public credit rating. “As hunger grows in rural areas, the demand for our services is greater than ever and we need to broaden our investor base as much as possible,” said Gilbert F. Houngbo, President of IFAD.As the leading global development organization dedicated exclusively to eradicating poverty and hunger in rural areas, IFAD plays a critical role in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by 2030.The recently released Ceres2030 report found that an additional US$14 billion a year, on average, is needed until 2030 to end hunger and double the incomes of 545 million small-scale farmers. This means roughly doubling the amount of aid given for food security and nutrition each year.IFAD has been exploring new funding models to help it double its impact on reducing poverty and hunger by 2030, and meet the changing needs of borrowing countries at a time when Official Development Assistance (ODA) is under severe pressure, and the economic impacts of COVID-19 threaten to push millions more rural people into hunger and poverty. IFAD-supported projects and programmes are currently funded through contributions from its 177 Member States, investment income and reflows, as well as cofinancing from other sources.“It is a new era and we need to keep pushing the boundaries of how we fund development,” said Houngbo. “This second rating strengthens the assessment of IFAD’s creditworthiness and allows us to develop a diversified, broader and more predictable funding base. By harnessing additional resources, we can stretch every dollar of taxpayer money we receive to ensure we reach the poorest of the poor.” Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, there could be up to 132 million more hungry people in 2020 alone, and extreme poverty looks set to increase for the first time in decades. With only 10 years left to achieve the SDGs, there is an urgent need to increase investment in the rural areas where most of the world’s extremely poor and hungry people live, and where IFAD focuses its activities.

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Historic statement by Public Development Banks signals greater commitment to tackle global hunger and poverty

Posted by fidest press agency su domenica, 15 novembre 2020

Rome. For the first time in history, today 13 Public Development Banks (PDBs) made a joint commitment to strengthen investments in food and agriculture in the context of a global pandemic and a changing climate, with more signatories expected in the coming days.This unprecedented move comes as an urgent response to the world’s most pressing development and climate challenges in some of the most vulnerable countries.The statement contributes to the Finance in Common Summit (9-12 November) where 450 PDBs from all sectors will meet for the first time to commit to actions that shift investments to a greener and more sustainable path, while responding to the COVID-19 crisis.The statement has been signed so far by 13 agriculture and rural banks from Sub-Saharan Africa, Asia and Latin America, and regional rural and agricultural credit associations. While these banks may be diverse in terms of capital base, mandate and instruments, the statement emphasizes the critical role they all play in financing future sustainable and inclusive food systems, and in addressing market failures – particularly in times of crisis such as the current COVID-19 pandemic.To that end, the statement stresses the need to improve regulations, policies, governance and institutional capacity to allow PDBs to take on the necessary investment risks while remaining financially viable and institutionally sustainable in a rapidly changing financial market.The signatories also acknowledge the importance of focusing on smallholder farmers and small and medium-sized agribusinesses, and developing financial products and services tailored to their needs. Their ability to access finance for investment is often constrained by their size, asset base, fragmentation and lack of information and coordination in both agricultural and financial markets.“It is critical that Public Development Banks focus on small-scale producers and agripreneurs who are the backbone of food systems and economies of many low and middle income countries,” said Houngbo. “With access to finance, they can be far more productive and contribute to broader food security and prosperity.”The statement further emphasizes the important role of PDBs as catalyzers of private sector investments which are often hindered by a variety of risks, costs, and poor economic returns. PDBs can develop innovative financial solutions to attract investors to the sector and help align commercial finance to global development, environmental and climate-related goals.According to the Food and Land Use Coalition, transitioning to more sustainable practices in food systems may require US$300-350 billion per year until 2030, but deliver an “economic prize” of $5.7 trillion saved in “hidden costs” associated with current practices, and unlock $4.5 trillion annual opportunities for businesses.In this context, IFAD is stepping up its engagement with the private sector to attract investments in small-scale agriculture and rural small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). In October, IFAD was the first UN fund to receive a public credit rating making it easier to raise funds from public and private lenders. Last March, IFAD invested in a private impact fund, the ABC Fund, to boost investments in rural SMEs.

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African Heads of State call on world leaders to increase investment in IFAD to end rural hunger and poverty

Posted by fidest press agency su giovedì, 22 ottobre 2020

Ten African Heads of State have issued a strong call to other world leaders to increase their funding to the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) or risk jeopardizing Sustainable Development Goal targets for eradicating poverty and hunger, particularly in Africa.“We share IFAD’s vision of vibrant rural communities where people live free from poverty and hunger,” wrote the leaders of of Angola, Benin, Burkina Faso, Côte d’Ivoire, Ethiopia, the Gambia, Kenya, Senegal, Sierra Leone and Togo in letters to their counterparts in Europe, North America, the Middle East, Asia and Oceania. “Investing in building the resilience of rural people is now more important than ever in order to secure food supplies, safeguard rural livelihoods, ensure that progress made over the years is not lost and prevent more rural people from falling into poverty and hunger”. Right now, Africa is addressing conflict, changing weather patterns, pests and the socioeconomic impacts of COVID-19. Hunger levels on the continent are twice the world average. IFAD is the only multilateral development organization soley dedicated to eradicating rural poverty and hunger. In the letters, the African leaders called for a significant increase in contributions to IFAD’s Twelfth Replenishment (IFAD12) – a year-long consultative process during which Member States come together to agree on strategic directions and mobilize funds for IFAD to provide as concessional loans and grants to developing countries.“This support from the African Heads of State is a testimony to the real impact IFAD is having on the lives and livelihoods of rural people in these countries,” said Marie Haga, IFAD’s Associate Vice President for External Relations and Governance. “Their support demonstrates the importance of investing in rural areas to achieve national food security, environmental sustainability and economic development which has a monumental impact on global stability and resilience.”About 75 per cent of the world’s poorest people live in rural areas and depend on agriculture and related activities for their livelihoods. In the letters, the African leaders highlight the immense potential of African agriculture and the strong evidence that investing in agriculture is one of the most effective ways of reducing poverty.IFAD aims to deliver an overall programme of work of US$10 billion for the IFAD12 period (2022–2024), with over half of investments allocated to Africa. This would help more than 140 million small-scale producers increase their production and raise their incomes through better market access and resilience, contributing to creating jobs and improving food security and nutrition for those most at risk of being left behind.“A successful replenishment has the potential to unlock billions of dollars in financing to transform rural economies and food systems around the world, as well as enable IFAD to double its impact by 2030 and contribute to ending poverty and hunger,” wrote the leaders.As the pandemic sweeps across the world, the poor and the vulnerable are those who suffer most, among them rural women, young people and small-scale farmers. Faced with the socio-economic repercussions of the pandemic and the impact of prolonged drought and locust infestation, the African leaders called to collectively reaffirm the world’s commitment to end hunger.

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Roma integration: fight social exclusion, poverty and anti-gypsyism, MEPs demand

Posted by fidest press agency su sabato, 12 settembre 2020

The Civil Liberties Committee passed on Thursday a resolution denouncing that, due to persistent anti-gypsyism, Romani people in Europe suffer the highest rates of poverty and social exclusion. MEPs therefore demand inclusive education, early childhood development and an end to discrimination and segregation. The text, which will be put to the vote in plenary in October, was adopted with 52 votes to 9 and 5 abstentions.The resolution regrets that the situation of Romani people in the EU has not improved, partly because of “the lack of political will”, and that a significant part of Romani people in Europe lives in “extremely precarious” conditions, with most deprived of their fundamental human rights in all areas of life.They call on the Commission to table a legislative proposal focused on fighting poverty and anti-gypsyism and improving living and health conditions of Romani people. The proposal should include a plan to eliminate housing, health, employment and education inequalities, as well as specific binding objectives to improve inclusion. Efforts should be accelerated in all EU member states but especially in those with a large Romani population, say MEPs.Member states should improve access to good quality and affordable healthcare for Romani people, including sexual and reproductive healthcare. All forms of ethnic segregation in health facilities must be banned, including maternal health care settings. MEPs also ask member states to compensate survivors of forced and coercive sterilization.
Providing Romani children with an equal start in life is essential to break the poverty cycle, say MEPs, who want to end all forms of school or class segregation of these pupils. They condemn the discriminatory practice of placing them in schools for children with mental disabilities, still in place in some EU countries, and call on the Commission to continue pressing member states to desegregate, taking the cases to the European Court of Justice if needed.MEPs finally note that the COVID-19 crisis has worsened the situation of marginalised communities of Romani people living in overcrowded and inhuman conditions and warn that, due to limited access to healthcare, drinking water, sanitation and food, they are more at risk of contracting the virus.

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EU must prioritise fight against youth unemployment, homelessness and poverty

Posted by fidest press agency su mercoledì, 15 luglio 2020

MEPs want social inclusion and people’s wellbeing at the heart of EU economic policies, with equal priority given to social, environmental and economic objectives.Parliament adopted a resolution to feed into the forthcoming EU Employment Guidelines on Friday with 550 votes in favour, 128 against and 10 abstentions, calling for radical measures to cushion the employment and social shock caused by the pandemic.Rapporteur José Gusmão (GUE/NGL, PT) said: “The report on the employment guidelines adopted today shows a complete reversal of the positions that have dominated the European institutions for many years. In a context in which the problems caused by the Covid-19 pandemic are further aggravated by precarious employment relations and the deregulation of the labour market, this report proposes an alternative path that is as clear as it is urgent.“The fight against youth unemployment, homelessness and poverty must be prioritised through a reinforced Youth Guarantee, a strong Child Guarantee for tackling child poverty and the Housing First approach, the text says. MEPs insist that more efforts are needed to close the gender pay -, pension and employment gaps and that the gender impact of social and employment policies should be closely monitored.In light of the social and employment consequences of the COVID-19 crisis, and to strengthen the EU response to similar future crises, MEPs call for a revision of the EU Employment Guidelines, which underpin the country-specific recommendations of the European Semester.MEPs consider that the so-called ‘General escape clause’, that gives member states unprecedented fiscal flexibility to protect employment and finance public health and social services, has to reflect the scale and duration of the COVID-19 crisis.Only companies that are not registered in tax havens, that respect the applicable collective agreements and that do not pay dividends or bonuses should be allowed to apply for financial assistance from the SURE mechanism for short-time work, they add.

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Time to eradicate energy poverty in Europe

Posted by fidest press agency su martedì, 2 luglio 2019

Around 11% of the EU population – 54 million Europeans, is affected by energy poverty. Yet, most EU countries still do not identify or quantify vulnerable energy consumers, and do not adequately target energy poverty measures.Highly concerned by energy poverty, the European Committee of the Regions has unanimously adopted the opinion ‘Multilevel governance and cross-sectoral cooperation to fight energy poverty’. It includes a series of proposals amongst which to develop further the European definition of energy poverty, targeted investments in energy efficiency, a revision of the single market that delivers low energy prices for households and time framed targets to end energy poverty.Rapporteur Kata Tüttő (HU/PES), Representative of Local Government of District 12 of Budapest, said: “Today over 50 million Europeans are forced to choose between heating and eating, living their lives in energy poverty. This has serious effects on the health and wellbeing of people and we know that women are more severely affected by it. The right to clean and affordable energy, which is also part of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals, should be guaranteed to every European citizen. By leveraging investments in energy efficiency to renovate Europe’s building stock and by setting up specific social protection schemes and a properly functioning and competitive single market that delivers low energy prices for consumers, the EU will bring direct benefits and show its added value to citizens. A just energy and climate transition that does not leave anyone behind must start by eradicating energy poverty.” Basic energy prices for household consumers cannot be left to market self-regulation, Members agree. In order to limit excessive energy costs, cities and regions urge the EU to put into place legal frameworks providing Member States and local and regional authorities with the right tools to ensure affordable energy for all. In this sense, the CoR also echoes a call from the European Parliament on the European Commission to provide further guidance on when Member States are allowed to intervene in the market to avoid a ‘significant number of households’ being affected by energy poverty.Local leaders propose a moratorium on the termination or suspension of basic energy services for those citizens’ failing to pay.Cities and regions urge Member States to transpose into national laws the updated Energy Performance of Buildings Directive (EPBD) by March 2020 at the latest. The new EPBD entered into force on 9 July 2018. It includes measures that will accelerate the rate of building renovation towards more energy efficient systems and strengthen the energy performance of new buildings.Yet, members recall that the renewed EPBD should be complemented with additional targets and investments to renovate Europe’s building stock without which efforts to eradicate energy poverty will be insufficient.Adequate warmth, cooling, lighting and the energy to power appliances are essential services needed to guarantee a decent standard of living and citizens’ health. Energy poverty occurs when a household suffers from a lack of adequate energy services in the home (EC).Local leaders want to see the Energy Poverty Observatory lifespan extended so to continue collecting and evaluating data as a key input for improving policies to eradicate energy poverty. Two thirds of Member States are not yet monitoring the development of energy poverty using quantitative metrics, members recall.

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Poverty gets into your skin: Lifepath issue 12

Posted by fidest press agency su venerdì, 26 aprile 2019

The increase of socioeconomic differences may provoke biological changes that in turn translate into health inequalities. A recent study published on Aging by a group of scientists of the Lifepath project revealed that low education might have an impact on health at older age comparable to that of well-known risk factors such as obesity and alcohol abuse. According to the researchers, this effect is mediated by epigenetics modifications associated to biological aging.Poorer people are more likely to experience worse health throughout the course of their life, especially in older age. The risk of poor health is associated with a step-by-step decrease in socio-economic position, creating what has come to be known as a social gradient in health [Figure 1]. Lifepath is a European project that studied the biological processes underlying this association, in order to understand how socioeconomic conditions can “get under the skin”, as Paolo Vineis (Imperial College, London) synthesized during the final meeting of the project he coordinates, held in Geneva (CH).
Early age is a veritable game changer, and it is crucial to intervene to support poorer families and children to make them more resilient to adverse circumstances during life and to ensure a healthy ageing. “Studies from Lifepath show that children and adolescents from low socio-economic backgrounds were more likely to be overweight, having a higher Body Mass Index from as young as the age of three, then affecting health in adulthood. Biological markers in children, such as epigenetic age acceleration, were affected by the social position of the family as well, while living in disadvantaged neighbourhood negatively impacts on several cardiometabolic risk factors.
One of Lifepath’s goals was also to assess the impact of the 2008 recession in Europe. Lifepath researchers completed a study of health inequalities in 27 European countries that included the period of the 2008 banking crisis. “Most European countries have experienced many decades of mortality decline and the evidence suggests this was not derailed by the recession”, comments Johan Mackenbach (Erasmus Medical Centre, Rotterdam). “This study likely reflects a level of resilience in most European countries built up through the provision of financially accessible health care and social support systems. However, mortality from smoking-related causes increased for younger less educated women and mortality from alcohol-related causes went up among less educated men and women”
Studies from Lifepath can be very useful to understand the real causes and biological mechanisms of growing health inequalities affecting our societies, but can also give useful suggestions to policy makers about timing of interventions in order to break the intergenerational transmission of health injustice”, says Michael Marmot (UCL, London). “Undoubtedly, the effects of education and social support in early life is as crucial as interventions on life style factors and on social conditions in adulthood”.

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Healthcare, Poverty, and Education are Closely Linked – How Do We Move Forward?

Posted by fidest press agency su venerdì, 19 gennaio 2018

london-centralLondon. According to Dr. Charles (Chuck) Basch, author of Healthier Students Are Better Learners, health issues, which disproportionately plague low-income urban minority youth, play a major role in limiting students motivation and ability to learn.It is estimated that 800 million people are spending at least 10 percent of their household budget on out-of-pocket health care expenses, and nearly 100 million people are being pushed into extreme poverty each year due to health care costs. The United Nations Sustainable Development Goal 3 aims to achieve Universal Healthcare for all people by 2030.According to Kara Hanson, Professor of Health System Economics at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, there are two main challenges for healthcare in low and middle-income countries. The first challenge is the “growing burden of non-communicable diseases.” Hansen says that “more than half of the disease burden in lower-middle income countries is due to non-communicable diseases, and even in the lowest income countries, non-communicable diseases are responsible for one-third of the disease burden.”The Millennial Bloggers can be found all around the world. They are innovators and are dedicated to education; their merit can be seen throughout their efforts to educate and lead.“There are so many challenges confronting humanity that we need to be deploying capital differently,” says Bonnie Chiu who argues that “impact investing is the key to funding universal access to healthcare.” A Columbia University study found that in 2008, the average doctor in the US earned $186,582, while in Canada, a country with higher healthcare satisfaction, the average doctor earns $125,000. “Broadening taxation and reducing spending would be ideal ways to balance the books,” says Jacob Navarette. “A truly modern health system needs to focus on enabling choice within itself,” notes James Kernochan.The Millennial Bloggers are Alusine Barrie, Sajia Darwish, James Kernochan, Kamna Kathuria, Jacob Deleon Navarrete, Reetta Heiskanen, Shay Wright, Isadora Baum, Wilson Carter III, Francisco Hernandez, Erin Farley, Dominique Alyssa Dryding, Harry Glass, Harmony Siganporia and Bonnie Chiu.CMRubinWorld launched in 2010 to explore what kind of education would prepare students to succeed in a rapidly changing globalized world. Its award-winning series, The Global Search for Education, is a celebrated trailblazer in the renaissance of the 21st century, and occupies a special place in the pulse of key issues facing every nation and the collective future of all children. It connects today’s top thought leaders with a diverse global audience of parents, students and educators. Its highly readable platform allows for discourse concerning our highest ideals and the sustainable solutions we must engineer to achieve them. C. M. Rubin has produced over 600 interviews and articles discussing an expansive array of topics under a singular vision: when it comes to the future of children, there is always more work to be done.

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Almost 23 million children in the EU are poor

Posted by fidest press agency su giovedì, 1 dicembre 2016

europeMore women and men are living on the edge of poverty and social exclusion today compared to 2010, according to a new study by the European Institute for Gender Equality (EIGE). Young people, lone parents, migrants, people with disabilities and families with three or more children are most at risk of poverty.
Today, almost 23 million children in the EU grow up in poverty. There is also clear evidence that a heavy dependence on a father’s income in many families increases the risk of poverty and insecurity. Especially when unexpected life events occur, such as job loss, family break-up, serious illness or even death. The study shows that if a father were to lose his job, 70 % of couples with children would fall into poverty.“We need to ensure better career options for women, fair wages and better social systems, such as pension schemes that consider the different needs and challenges women and men face. These will help protect not only women against poverty, but also the whole family, including men and children”, said Virginija Langbakk, EIGE’s Director.
Employment is crucial in safeguarding people against poverty, however a job is not always enough. A third (36 %) of men and a quarter (25 %) of women who are poor are employed. Many working men live in poor households because their wives or partners are out of the labour market or earn very low income. Women with children have a relatively low employment rate. Only half (55 %) of women with three or more children have a job. With the arrival of each additional child, the economic independence of women shrinks. The need to care for children, parents or sick and disabled relatives keeps many women out of paid work and this has life-long consequences for their career, financial situation and ultimately on pensions.‘In an inclusive society, people’s well-being and life chances should not be pre-determined by their gender or other social factors. Nor should children create a poverty risk’ said Virginija Langbakk.

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80% of Roma are at risk of poverty, new survey finds

Posted by fidest press agency su mercoledì, 30 novembre 2016

povertyWidespread deprivation is destroying Roma lives. Families are living excluded from society in shocking conditions, while children with little education face bleak prospects for the future, a new report from the European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA) shows. The report analyses the gaps in Roma inclusion around the EU to guide Member States seeking to improve their integration policies.
“Our manifest inability in Europe to honour the human rights of our Roma communities is unacceptable. The levels of deprivation, marginalisation, and discrimination of Europe’s largest minority is a grave failure of law and policy in the EU and its Member States,” says FRA Director Michael O’Flaherty. “The publication of these findings provides an opportunity to galvanise policy makers into action and focus resources on redressing this intolerable situation.”The Second European Union Minorities and Discrimination Survey (EU-MIDIS II): Roma – selected findings report shows that:
80% of Roma interviewed are at risk of poverty compared with an EU average of 17%. 30% live in households with no tap water and 46% have no indoor toilet, shower or bathroom.
30% of Roma children live in households where someone went to bed hungry at least once in the previous month.
53% of young Roma children attend early childhood education, often less than half the proportion of children their age from the general population in the same country.
Only 30% of the Roma surveyed are in paid work, compared with the average EU employment rate for 2015 of 70%.
41% of Roma feel they have been discriminated against over the past 5 years in everyday situations such as looking for work, at work, housing, health and education.
82% of Roma are unaware of organisations offering support to victims of discrimination. The survey findings indicate that despite Member States’ efforts, they are still falling short of most of their integration targets, a key element of the EU’s 2011 National Roma Integration Strategies Framework. The results underline the need for:
early childhood learning support and integrated schooling
better employment opportunities and greater social protection to eradicate poverty
targeted education and training to specifically help Roma youths and Roma women in their transition from primary to secondary education, and thereafter find work.
The report is based on a survey that collected information in nine EU Member States, derived from nearly 8,000 face-to-face interviews with Roma. It is part of the Agency’s Second European Union Minorities and Discrimination Survey (EU-MIDIS II), which collected data on immigrants and ethnic minorities’ discrimination and victimisation experiences and income and living conditions in all 28 EU Member States. (foto: poverty)

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There is a growing consensus that current narratives around poverty have failed and that a new approach is needed to create a good society

Posted by fidest press agency su venerdì, 28 ottobre 2016

londraLondra. One that requires collective action from government, charities, business and communities and which is willing to try new ways of working. This was the message to come out of an event and special report, organised by the Webb Memorial Trust.
Andrew Curtis, senior programme manager at Oxfam, said: “There is growing consensus that the narratives used in the third sector, however well-meaning and right, have been rejected. Poverty is a term that is politically divisive, creates stigma and is highly contested to the point of still having to persuade people that poverty exists in the UK. We need to create a new way of speaking, to speak with those directly affected not for them, and we need to speak louder.” Olivia Bailey, research director at the Fabian Society, said: “Language matters. Talking about poverty describes the problem but it doesn’t generate enthusiasm for solutions. We need to find a new framework that is a rallying point for people to get behind a raft of policies. The American Dream tapped into that aspiration. We should think about the ‘British Promise’, which should be the security to know if you need help it is there.” Dr Michael Orton, Warwick University Institute for Employment Research, said: “A shared vision means not working in silos. It means consensus building. Working together should be at the core of what we do. Instead of launching into ideological deconstructions of that vision, we should [each] focus on the bits that we can work with.”Rys Farthing, a social policy analyst who specialises in youth and poverty, said: “Our ways of trying to create a world without poverty have been tried and tested and got us this far. We need to try every tactic we can think of to keep winning. Working with children and young people as a solution is a strategy we haven’t tried much yet. It might be a way to find some new pathways to progress.”

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Poverty and Inequalities on the RiseJust Social Models needed as the solution

Posted by fidest press agency su martedì, 17 febbraio 2015

povertyA study of the impact of the European crisis and austerity on people, with a special focus on Cyprus, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Portugal, Romania and SpainSpeakers include: Antonio Tajani (European Parliament Vice-president, EPP), David-Maria Sassoli (European Parliament Vice-president, S&D), Lieve Fransen (Director for Social Policies & EU2020 at the EU Commission, Jorge Nuño Mayer (Caritas Europa Secretary General), Walter Nanni (Head of Caritas Italiana Research Unit). Tiziana Ciampolini (Head of Caritas Torino Observatory). Moderator: Susanna Petruni (TG1 RAI Vice-director).In addition, representatives from Caritas Greece, Caritas Italy and Caritas Spain will present the situation in their countries, based on their work on grass-root level with the poor and unemployed.
The report, commissioned by Caritas Europa and Caritas organisations in 7 EU Member States, is the third annual edition in a series of in-depth examination on the impact that current policies are having on people in the EU countries worst affected by the economic crisis. It describes the human impacts of the crisis and of austerity policies, and documents the growing number of people struggling with poverty and inequalities.The Report also informs on measures undertaken by the EU and national authorities and on the impact of the “Troika Programmes”. Furthermore, it shows how the crisis has affected access to social services and healthcare, and deepened the difficult situation of children and their families.The last two editions of the Crisis Monitoring Report were well received and acknowledged by many European stakeholders; institutions, civil society organisations and media. (Photo: poverty)

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Poverty and Inequalities on the Rise Just Social Models needed as the solution

Posted by fidest press agency su sabato, 14 febbraio 2015

povertyA study of the impact of the European crisis and austerity on people, with a special focus on Cyprus, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Portugal, Romania and Spain. Speakers include: Antonio Tajani (European Parliament Vice-president, EPP), David-Maria Sassoli (European Parliament Vice-president, S&D), Lieve Fransen (Director for Social Policies & EU2020 at the EU Commission, Jorge Nuño Mayer (Caritas Europa Secretary General), Walter Nanni (Head of Caritas Italiana Research Unit). Tiziana Ciampolini (Head of Caritas Torino Observatory). Moderator: Susanna Petruni (TG1 RAI Vice-director).In addition, representatives from Caritas Greece, Caritas Italy and Caritas Spain will present the situation in their countries, based on their work on grass-root level with the poor and unemployed.
The report, commissioned by Caritas Europa and Caritas organisations in 7 EU Member States, is the third annual edition in a series of in-depth examination on the impact that current policies are having on people in the EU countries worst affected by the economic crisis. It describes the human impacts of the crisis and of austerity policies, and documents the growing number of people struggling with poverty and inequalities.The Report also informs on measures undertaken by the EU and national authorities and on the impact of the “Troika Programmes”. Furthermore, it shows how the crisis has affected access to social services and healthcare, and deepened the difficult situation of children and their families.The last two editions of the Crisis Monitoring Report were well received and acknowledged by many European stakeholders; institutions, civil society organisations and media. (Photo. Poverty)

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Strong families are our best defence against poverty

Posted by fidest press agency su domenica, 14 settembre 2014

(FILES) Cardinal Oscar Rodriguez MaradiaAround 150 people from the Vatican, Caritas organisations, pontifical universities, religious congregations and Italian dioceses will gather in Rome on 18th September to discuss “The Family: a resource to overcome the crisis.” The outcome of the meeting will form a basis for proposals to the upcoming Extraordinary General Assembly Synod of Bishops on the family held at the Vatican.
Cardinal Oscar Rodríguez Maradiaga, president of Caritas Internationalis, will open the meeting. He said, “The economic crisis has increased inequality and exclusion. With so many challenges, our blood families, our global human family and our spiritual family have become more important than ever in ensuring we don’t fall into loneliness and desperation. Where economic and social systems fail, the solidarity and protection of families are the best defence against poverty.”
The financial crisis which started in 2008 has pushed millions of families into poverty and left the world more unequal than ever. In many countries there are fewer jobs and families even in wealthier countries are finding it increasingly hard to feed themselves.
The seminar will look at the psychological effects of the economic crisis, migration and the pastoral and spiritual approaches for facing the challenges of the crisis, among other things.
Caritas organisations in many countries offer a variety of services such as food and clothes banks, counselling, loans, job training, healthcare and lodging to help people to cope with the crisis.
The meeting will look at how Caritas as the charitable arm of the Church can work through families to better promote development.
Around 150 people from the Vatican, Caritas organisations, pontifical universities, religious congregations and Italian dioceses will gather in Rome on 18th September to discuss “The Family: a resource to overcome the crisis.”
The outcome of the meeting will form a basis for proposals to the upcoming Extraordinary General Assembly Synod of Bishops on the family held at the Vatican.
Cardinal Oscar Rodríguez Maradiaga, president of Caritas Internationalis, will open the meeting. He said, “The economic crisis has increased inequality and exclusion. With so many challenges, our blood families, our global human family and our spiritual family have become more important than ever in ensuring we don’t fall into loneliness and desperation. Where economic and social systems fail, the solidarity and protection of families are the best defence against poverty.”
The financial crisis which started in 2008 has pushed millions of families into poverty and left the world more unequal than ever. In many countries there are fewer jobs and families even in wealthier countries are finding it increasingly hard to feed themselves.
The seminar will look at the psychological effects of the economic crisis, migration and the pastoral and spiritual approaches for facing the challenges of the crisis, among other things.
Caritas organisations in many countries offer a variety of services such as food and clothes banks, counselling, loans, job training, healthcare and lodging to help people to cope with the crisis.

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Bishops call for leaders of hope

Posted by fidest press agency su venerdì, 17 gennaio 2014

gaza-mapAs bishops from Europe, South Africa and North America we came to the Holy Land to pray with and support the Christian community and the cause of peace. In Gaza we witnessed the deep poverty of the people, and the courageous presence of the small and vulnerable Christian communities there.Gaza is a man-made disaster, a shocking scandal, an injustice that cries out to the human community for a resolution. We call upon political leaders to improve the humanitarian situation of the people in Gaza, assuring access to the basic necessities for a dignified human life, the possibilities for economic development, and freedom of movement.In the seemingly hopeless situation of Gaza, we met people of hope. We were encouraged by our visit to tiny Christian communities, which day after day, through many institutions, reach out with compassion to the poorest of the poor, both Muslim and Christian. We continue to pray for and support the priests, religious and laypeople working in Gaza. They exercise a ministry of presence, care for disabled children and the elderly, and teach the young.Their testimony of faith, hope and love gave us hope. This is precisely the hope needed at this moment to bring peace, a peace that can only be built on justice and equity for both peoples. Palestinians and Israelis desperately need this peace. For example, in the Cremisan valley the route of the security barrier threatens the agricultural land held for generations by 58 Christian families. The current peace talks come at a critical time. Now is the time to ensure that the aspirations for justice of both sides are fulfilled.We urge public officials to become leaders of hope, not people of obstruction. We call upon them to listen to the words of Pope Francis, who recently said to the Diplomatic Corps: “The resumption of peace talks between Israelis and Palestinians is a positive sign, and I express my hope that both parties will resolve, with the support of the international community, to take courageous decisions aimed at finding a just and lasting solution to a conflict which urgently needs to end” (13 January, 2014).As we leave the Holy Land, the bishops and people of the local Church remain in our hearts. They are not alone. Together with them we are people of hope. We pray that the visit of Pope Francis to the Holy Land will reinforce hope in the region. We believe a lasting peace is possible.

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Conference of European Churches wants lending to be responsible

Posted by fidest press agency su mercoledì, 4 dicembre 2013

Schengen Agreement

Schengen Agreement (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The Conference of European Churches (CEC) is urging lenders to act in a responsible way to ensure that debts can be repaid in a reasonable time period during a time when it said the unemployment of you people has become a “scandal”.”In the past, debt was seen as something to be ashamed of but now it has become a way of life for both governments and individuals, exacerbated by the fear of social exclusion,” the Governing Board of CEC said in a statement.”European churches are aware that poverty is a material deprivation and is also a threat to human dignity. It affects the self-understanding of people as created in God’s image and violates a person’s dignity,” the Governing Board which met from November 26-29 said in a statement on December 2.”The unemployment of young people in Europe has become a scandal,” the Board said noting discussions on this at other meetings of CEC.It noted that at the end of 2013 youth unemployment in the 28 nations of the European Union stood above 23.5 percent up by 0.4 percentage points from a year earlier.”But huge differences exist and there is still a growing divergence: In Germany (7.7 percent) and Austria (8.7 percent) youth unemployment is quite low, but in Spain (56.5 percent) and Greece (57.3 percent) even the official data are alarming,” said CEC.”This situation affects not only young people’s social situation and income; it robs them of the essence of their lives. The household incomes of families, employment rates and poverty percentages – the divergences in Europe are growing and the gap between so-called Nordic and the South and countries on the peripheries is deepening.””CEC said that in next year’s European Parliamentary elections, “There should be European debates on the reduction of poverty, inequality and divergences in Europe.””They must reflect solidarity with the common European good, the values for which CEC stands,” the CEC Governing Board said. It noted that poverty is one aspect of social exclusion and the prevention of full participation in daily life.”There should be European debates on the reduction of poverty, inequality and divergences in Europe. They must reflect solidarity with the common European good, the values for which CEC stands,” the CEC Governing Board said.

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Notre Europe

Posted by fidest press agency su sabato, 23 novembre 2013

Jacques Delors

Jacques Delors (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Jacques Delors Institute publishes a study commissioned by the Federal Chancellery of Austria on the impact of the reforms currently implemented or mooted on national welfare states in the EMU.
As Jacques Delors underlines in the foreword of this study, national welfare states, to which Europe’s citizens feel immensely attached, play a central role in EU countries whatever the differences there may be among the member states. Even though the welfare state was already facing a dual challenge in terms both of funding and of effectiveness before 2007, the current crisis has only worsened the tension weighing down on welfare states.The economic downturn has translated into a significant rise of unemployment and poverty levels, in particular in the euro area periphery, whereas growing pressure to consolidate national budgets is forcing significant cuts in social spending. At the same time, the crisis has led to a major reform of the European economic governance and the current debate suggests deepening the process of integration within the euro area in the fiscal, economic, banking and political fields.In the first part of this study, Sofia Fernandes and Kristina Maslauskaite present an overview of the state of ”Social Europe” today with an emphasis on the consequences of the new economic governance on national employment and social policies and the impact of the current crisis on national welfare states. In the second part of the study, the authors propose three possible scenarios for EMU’s future. These scenarios are built on different assumptions and they include a set of initiatives in the fields of the fiscal, economic, banking and political union as well as EMU’s social dimension. The authors assess each scenario on the basis of their main consequences for the euro area economy and for national welfare states from core and peripheral member states.

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