Anjali, 7 and Nandini in the Madhu Basti, Kolkata, India.

Child poverty

Helping children to build a better future

We’re fighting child poverty – because we believe every child should be able to make their mark on the world. In 2017, we helped bring 1.6 million children out of extreme poverty.

The effects of child poverty can be devastating – and it lasts a lifetime.

Around the world, the poorest children are most at risk of disease, malnutrition and stunting.They’re more likely to miss out on school, or get a poor quality education. And there’s a greater chance they’ll suffer early marriage, physical violence or child labour.

But child poverty isn’t inevitable, as the story of Veronica and her family, below, shows.

And now governments are recognising this too. In 2015, more than 160 national leaders signed up to 17 Sustainable Development Goals, a set of targets that could end hunger, extreme poverty and preventable child deaths by 2030.

We're campaigning tirelessly to make sure governments deliver.

We're also working to tackle child poverty in the UK. Britain's one of the world’s richest countries, yet rates of poverty are rising – which means more children growing up without the essentials they need to fulfil their potential.

HOW WE’RE HELPING ZIPPORAH’S FAMILY THRIVE

This is Veronica, 46, and her eight-year-old daughter Zipporah. Veronica takes care of her seven children and one grandchild, in Turkana, Kenya

A drought meant Veronica’s livestock died. Her children often went hungry; “I couldn’t sleep at night,” she says. Zipporah’s little brother, Loirot, became malnourished.

Thankfully, one of our Save the Children Community Health Volunteers spotted the signs – and treated him with therapeutic food, making sure he recovered.

We also enrolled Veronica on our innovative Smart Card cash transfer scheme, meaning she was able buy essentials for her family. Veronica also used the cash transfer scheme to save up to buy these two new goats.

Qasim and Talib’s family was displaced from Sa’ada in North Yemen, where there father was a businessman, leaving behind their big house and farm. They lost everything in airstrikes. Now Save the Children supports them with monthly cash transfers.

Qasim and Talib’s family was displaced from Sa’ada in North Yemen, where their father was a businessman, leaving behind their big house and farm. They lost everything in airstrikes. Now Save the Children supports them with monthly cash transfers.

Around the world: 

  • 569 million children and young people live on less than a £1 a day.
  • 5.9 million children die each year – most in the world’s poorest communities, and from diseases that could have been prevented.
  • 78% of the poorest people live in South Asia and sub-Saharan Africa.

Our programmes are designed to ensure maximum impact for children. Below are just a few of the things were doing.

Ethiopia: As part of a programme to support 10,000 of the most vulnerable families, we’re training people to grow vegetables and farm livestock to increase their income. We’re also helping them form saving groups and access small finance initiatives.

Yemen: Working across three districts, we’re improving food security by training young men and women in skills that will help them find employment and offering food vouchers in exchange for community work.

Bangladesh: We’ve partneredthe Bangladesh government and others to tackle childhood stunting by changing the way nutrition services work and helping people develop sustainable livelihoods. We’re also supporting mothers and young children in 191,000 vulnerable households.

Lebanon: Alongside five other NGOs, we’re giving cash assistance to help the most vulnerable Syrian refugee families afford food and essential items. The monthly payments will reach around 154,000 people.

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