From Nottingham to Nairobi, poverty kills childhood and breaks parents’ hearts. These three mums show how poverty blights their children’s lives and opportunities. We care and want to change things. Do you?
Some families living in poverty face impossible choices. Some parents in the UK have to decide whether to pay the heating bills or put a decent meal on the table. Other parents, in the world’s poorest countries, face the prospect of losing a child because they can’t afford to pay a doctor to treat a sick child.
Agnes is a mum from Kingsville, Liberia. Her baby daughter, called Baby Girl, is three. Kingsville is a rural community with a dirty water supply that threatens lives. Her baby niece, who was visiting her, fell sick because of the dirty drinking water. She died in Agnes’ arms as she carried her to a medical clinic.
Davina McCall meets Agnes
This is the reality for millions of mothers living in poor countries around the world.
8.8 million children die every year before their fifth birthday, many because they can’t get the basic healthcare they need. So do half a million pregnant women.
Tracy is a lone parent with three children. She can’t afford her basic living expenses and has fallen into severe debt, including a £706 fuel bill which is being collected at £10 per week via her pre-payment meter. She’s currently relying on her local church to deliver food parcels.
Trisha, 24, lives in a two-bedroom council flat in London with her three children aged two, four and six. Her family receives benefits and lives below the poverty line.
“I want to get a job, but I can’t get one that pays well enough to pay rent, council tax, food, childcare and clothes. You may get £700 a month working and £400 would be rent and council tax. You then have to live off £300 a month.”