Over 1.3 billion people in the world today are surviving on less than $1.25 a day. And many millions more struggle to overcome discrimination, violence, conflict and disasters. That’s why the fight against poverty and hunger is at the heart of Ireland’s policy for international development. The policy is informed by our vision of a sustainable and just world, where people are empowered to overcome poverty and hunger and fully realise their rights and potential.
Inequality and marginalisation are key drivers of poverty everywhere. People living in poverty are very often denied the rights and necessities we associate with human dignity. These include access to nutritious food, to essential health and education services, to basic housing and shelter, to security and decent work.
The world has the resources to end poverty and hunger and ensure that people everywhere are empowered to live to their full potential.
The good news is that worldwide poverty is reducing and the Millennium Development Goal of halving world poverty by 2015 will be met. However progress is uneven and increased efforts are now needed by the international community to find solutions to the many daunting challenges which remain.
These solutions need to be informed by an understanding of the many and often complex factors which drive people into poverty and prevent them from escaping the viscous cycle of poverty in a rapidly changing world.