The Issues

Important Concepts to Address

Millennium Development Goals: a set of eight time-bound, measureable targets which set the course for the world’s efforts to alleviate extreme poverty by 2015. In their simplified version, they are:

  1. Eradicate extreme poverty and hunger
  2. Achieve universal primary education
  3. Promote gender equality and empower women
  4. Reduce child mortality
  5. Improve maternal health
  6. Combat HIV/AIDS, malaria and other diseases
  7. Ensure environmental sustainability
  8. Develop a global partnership for development

Absolute or extreme poverty: Unable to meet the basic needs of human life

Extreme poverty is a complex condition which exists as a result of any combination of a number of causes such as:

  • Political – war/conflict, history (colonialism, slavery), corruption, persecution;
  • Environmental – climate change and variability, geography, land degradation and desertification, natural disasters;
  • Social – population pressure, health (HIV/AIDS, malaria, TB, medical facilities, etc), gender equality, education/illiteracy, empowerment of women, exploitation (child labour,  human rights), birth registration, water and sanitation, food security and agriculture, disability;
  • Economic – foreign debt (cancellation of), unfair trade rules.

To access an excellent summary of the major issues of extreme poverty I recommend visiting the ONE site at:

To access brilliant interactive maps showing the major issues and indicators of poverty in Africa and around the world, check out:

The Breaking the Cycle LINKS page has a list of organisations and their urls which is a good place to continue your research.  

To be expanded on soon…..