The world is taking huge steps in overcoming world poverty. This is evident because, since 1990, a quarter of the world has risen out of the extreme poverty levels. However, approximately ten percent of the world lives in extreme poverty, surviving at less than a dollar and ninety cents a day. Poverty reduction is a set of measures that may be both humanitarian and economic put in place to lift people out of poverty. Such actions may enable the poor to create wealth themselves as a means of putting an end to poverty. This paper will explore the different ways of reducing poverty.
How to reduce poverty
Government policies are one of the most effective ways to achieve poverty reduction in any particular country. The policies may be directed towards services, economic, or humanitarian sector with the aim of easing the burden on poor people. Policies directed on welfare has benefits to the poorest people in society, for example, may come a long way to improving their lives. These benefits may include unemployment benefits, food stamps, housing benefits, income support, among others. Policies on minimum wages, which may be enforced by regulation of labor markets, ensure statutory minimum payments. Other government policies that way help reduce poverty include free-market policies to promote economic growth and direct provision of goods and services, to mention but a few.
Investing in and implementing agricultural programs goes a long way to reduce poverty in a region. China, for example, has helped about eight hundred million people out of poverty since 1978 by focusing on agricultural programs. The Agricultural Bank of China has lent more than four hundred million to help develop rural areas, fund education, infrastructure, and crop production. Agricultural development can stimulate economic development outside the agriculture sector and lead to higher job and growth creation. Increased productivity of agriculture boosts food supply, raises farm income, reduces food prices, and increases job opportunities in both urban and rural areas. Such linkage between growth in the agricultural sector and the broader economy may enable a country to diversify to other sectors where growth is higher and wages are better.
Encouraging countries to engage in trade is the path out of poverty. Countries like Brazil, Botswana and Indonesia have used trade as a way out of poverty. According to Le Goff, & Singh, R. J. (2013), economic growth is essential to sustained poverty reduction and trade is argued to lead to an increase in the production of sustainable growth. Freer trade they add provides more significant incentives for investments leading to higher economic growth. Open trade is particularly beneficial to the poor because it reduces the cost of what they buy and raises the prices of what they sell. Research by the world trade organization in conjunction with World Bank reveals that farmers and manufacturing workers earn more income when their products can reach overseas markets and this can be made possible through open trade.
Education is a powerful tool towards poverty reduction. Marginalized families are in the lowest income brackets in the world. With lower rates of life expectancy, higher incidence of health problems, and are more poorly nourished than the rest of the population. Education that targets marginalized people and poor populations can bring change to many of the systemic factors that have contributed to delay in poor communities’ development. Education influences the seventeen sustainable development goals, as shown in figure 1. Education, for example, helped Liberia to rebuild after the Ebola virus crisis. Maitta a 14-year-old in Liberia, for example, was taken by her aunt after she lost her parents to Ebola and took her to school and her teacher Elizabeth, who remained strong for her students helped the students rise above the crisis and perform well in school to become a great support system for their families.
Sustainable development goals achievable through education
Poverty levels can be reduced by providing access to technology and innovation. These include internet access and affordable energy. In Bangladesh, for example, only 40 percent of the rural population has access to grid electricity. Those that do not have access endure frequent power outages. In the bid to fight poverty, Bangladesh started the second rural electrification and renewable energy project plan to increase access to electricity in rural areas via renewable energy. In a seminar on Science Technology and Innovation for poverty reduction, it showcased a range of projects that are designed to benefit people in the poorest parts of the world, particularly those who reside in rural areas. These projects include technologies to provide clean water, electricity, disease control and mobile communication.
The world has made significant progress in poverty reduction and eradication. However, there is still much to be done across the globe to ensure poverty levels go down. Among the measures that can reduce poverty include implementing poverty reduction policies, encouraging countries to be involved in trade, education, providing access to technology and innovation, and investing in and implementing agricultural programs.
Diyamett, B. D., Wangwe, S. M., Komba, A., & Mneney, E. (2013). Science, Technology and Innovation for Poverty Reduction in Tanzania: An Analysis of the Sectoral Systems of Innovation. A Research Report for Manufacturing and Agriculture–Part II. Dar es Salaam: Research for Poverty Alleviation (REPOA).
Le Goff, M., & Singh, R. J. (2013). Does trade reduce poverty? A view from Africa. The World Bank.