We have some positive, revelatory news on poverty which can aid our community, helping us become more sensitive in how we give.
Helping is not just about giving money—it’s also about training a future workforce within a community. We feel good when we donate, but we also feel good when we are productive, give of our talents and have a calling. We need to afford that opportunity to everyone.
The success in the war against world poverty is, in part, due to the long-term economic success of developing nations, especially economic growth in Africa, Indonesia and Southeast Asia; China and the Chinese economy; strong social programs in South America; and investments by both philanthropic and for-profit groups.
There has been extreme growth in the numbers of “middle class poor.” This rising middle class no longer earns $2 per day—but $12-50 per day. For many people, that’s six to eight times the amount they used to earn. They can now spend more on their families for better nutrition, health care, and education. That’s the true strength of a community: Healthy bodies and healthy minds—not just a donation of one-time support.
This rising middle class calls for a new philanthropy: education will need to be more advanced. We can’t simply rely on 10-year-old or even one-year-old-donated computers. We need educational technologies; advanced teaching such as blended learning; and MOOCs (Massive Open Online Courses).
And goals should change. In the past, literacy was a goal.
Now, our purpose is to increase literacy in order to get a job, in order to become equal players in the workforce, in order to change themselves, their communities, their families’ futures. Smart “impoverished”, “low income-earners” know that if they are educated according to the needs in the marketplace, they can get hired here and now. They don’t have to move out of their own country, or languish unemployed. Important roles in manufacturing, call centers, data entry, customer service are available.
The need is for education to move beyond reading and core competencies into specific knowledge and skills. Your giving—whether donating or investing—can set them up to be strong employees in your company, strong citizens in their society. Both help the bottom line of our world: it’s safer; stronger; politically stable, and peaceful, for all.
Pamela Hawley is the founder and CEO of UniversalGiving™ (www.UniversalGiving.org), an award-winning nonprofit helping people to donate and volunteer with top performing, vetted organizations all over the world. Pamela is a winner of the Jefferson Award (the Nobel Prize in Community Service), and has been invited to three Social Innovation events at the White House. UniversalGiving has been featured on the homepage of BusinessWeek, Oprah.com, CBS, The Wall Street Journal, and The New York Times.
Universal Giving’s Website: http://www.UniversalGiving.org
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Twitter: @UniversalGiving and @PamelaHawley
LinkedIn: UniversalGiving Page and Pamela Hawley
Blogs: Living and Giving (CEO blog) and PhilanthroPost (team blog)