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Goal #1End Hunger & Extreme Poverty
Introduction

Over the years, we've been inundated with the statistics and the pictures of poverty around the world-so much so that many people in both the North and South have come to accept it as an unfortunate but unalterable state of affairs. The truth, however, is that things have changed in recent years. The world today is more prosperous than it ever has been. The technological advances we have seen in recent years have created encouraging new opportunities to improve economies and reduce hunger.

The targets

Goal 1 of the Millennium Development Goals sets out by the year 2015:

1. Reduce by half the proportion of people living on less than a dollar a day.

2. Reduce by half the proportion of people who suffer from hunger.

Did you know?

Did you know that in our world today:

  • One third of deaths – some 18 million people a year or 50,000 per day – are due to poverty-related causes. That’s 270 million people since 1990, the majority women and children, roughly equal to the population of the US. (Reality of Aid 2004)
  • Every year more than 10 million children die of hunger and preventable diseases – that’s over 30,000 per day and one every 3 seconds. (80 Million Lives, 2003 / Bread for the World / UNICEF / World Health Organization)
Achieving the Goals

Doctors at a local health clinic in Brazil learned the reason their patients who regularly came in with health problems related to poverty stopped coming was due to a national anti-hunger program that gave children three meals a day.

“It was simply that these children were starting to eat better,” says Nélia Maria Cruz, the clinic’s chief.

The children were among thousands who have benefited from Fome Zero (“Zero Hunger”), a national effort to eliminate hunger in Brazil.

The program’s formula is simple: Give each Brazilian the opportunity to have at least three meals a day. It might not seem like such a bold challenge but approximately one quarter of Brazil’s 170 million people currently live below the poverty line.

To meet the immediate needs of everyone who goes hungry in the country, the government needs to provide emergency help to 11 million families, according to official estimates. At the same time, the effort must include long-term actions to enable the population to manage on its own, so that in the future every family is able to buy its own food.

by Rogerio Waldrigues Galindo from Perspectives in Health

Goal News

Despite the impressive progress made by Asia-Pacific nations over the past decade in economic growth, 1.5 billion people in the region still live on less than two U.S. dollars a day, the Asian Development Bank (ADB) said on Thursday.

The statement was made as ADB representatives are highlighting the continuing prevalence of poverty in the region during discussions over the replenishment of the Asian Development Fund, an endowment used to provide grants and low-interest loans to some of Asia and the Pacific’s poorest nations.


United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today stressed that 2008 should be the year of the “bottom billion,” citing the need for renewed determination to address the needs of the poorest of the world’s poor who have been left behind by global economic growth.

“We must address ourselves to the needs of the weak, the disadvantaged, those who have been excluded from the mainstream international community,” Mr. Ban told reporters at a Headquarters press conference, his first for the new year.


NEW YORK – The world has the technical ability but lacks the political will to eliminate global hunger, a scourge afflicting one in eight people that is as much a violation of human rights as torture, according to a report by the NGO, Action Against Hunger.

A main tenet of the study, the Justice of Eating – the Struggle for Food and Dignity in Recent Humanitarian Crises, is that the right to food is an inextricable part of the basic set of freedoms embodying human rights that are collectively the minimum conditions necessary for the realisation of human dignity.


GENEVA – The world’s poorest countries, even those of sub-Saharan Africa, are ‘’approaching’’ the Millennium Development Goals, the new Trade and Development Index (TDI) indicates.

But after pointing out that possibility to IPS, Supachai Panitchpakdi, the secretary-general of the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development, clarified that ‘’performance will have to be sustained and improved in certain areas if countries are to meet the 2015 MDGs,’’ which were adopted by the international community in 2000.


A 350 kilometre demonstration march, which began on 2 October (Gandhi’s Birthday) in Gwalior, India, is travelling to New Delhi over twenty days. Up to 20,000 people, including village leaders and activists, are marching in an attempt to secure land rights from the government. This is the first installment in a series of videos following the march.