The Praxis Ethiopia Foundation

Community-driven, Sustainable Development to End Extreme Poverty

Extreme Poverty

The 7 Facts You Need to Know about Extreme Poverty

Extreme poverty is deadly, extreme poverty is the result of brutal circumstances. Read through "the 7 facts" and share them with others. Spend a little time getting to know why we must champion community-driven approaches to ending poverty. We can end extreme poverty in our lifetimes; however, we need to get busy.

Do you want to make a difference?

Get a pdf file with this information

Email us and we will send you ten bookmarks with these facts printed on one side, and Praxis Ethiopia's philosophy printed on the other side. Please be sure to include your mailing address. Give a bookmark to someone you know who cares about poverty in Africa and ask him or her to join with you in spreading the word.

1. The Earth is changing

Droughts and famines are not theories. They are occurring more often, they are doing more damage, and they are lasting for a longer time. They are dramatically changing east Africa. Many years ago, droughts were an occasional event occurring every ten to fifteen years, now they have become an annual event. They are eroding the land and endangering all forms of life in East Africa.

2. Extreme poverty is not an inconvenience, it is a death sentence

In many countries, being poor means not having a new television or wearing last year's fashions. In some countries, being poor might mean receiving monthly assistance from the government. In extremely poor countries, being poor means malnutrition and starvation. Child die from not having safe water to drink and one small crop failure will take the lives of hundreds of people.

3. Big governments are not helping

Developed countries have their own agendas and their own bureaucracies. Curiously, few people believe their own government is effective in solving the major problems of their country, yet naively believe those same governments are solving the crises faced in other countries (sounds silly, doesn't it?)

4. Relief-based approaches solve today's problems; development-based approaches change the future

Relief-based humanitarian efforts provide food and medicine, and they are important for solving "today's problems." Development-focused work trains farmers, healthcare workers, and teachers. Relief helps people to survive and development helps people to thrive. We need them both; however, development is often under-appreciated.

5. Community-based approaches work, all others fail

To end extreme poverty, we must begin with the needs of the community as defined by the members of the community, then find or develop cheap, practical, and sustainable solutions (that do not create more problems), help get those solutions started and make sure they are working, then move on.

6. The world has the technology and the expertise to end extreme poverty

There are safe, inexpensive solutions to help solve every problem facing Ethiopia and other poverty-stricken countries (i.e., tsetse fly control traps, sustainable farming, energy generation from biogas digesters, solar ovens, drip irrigation, malaria prevention using Artemisia, and many others). They are working in Ethiopia right now; we need to support the spread of the proven solutions and champion the development of new solutions.

7. Everyone can do something

Everyone is part of the solution to ending extreme poverty. You can learn more about the reality of extreme poverty. You can be an advocate for community-driven, development approaches to ending poverty. You can be a voice speaking out for compassion and respect for those born into extreme poverty and those extraordinary people who are surviving under some of the most harsh conditions in the world. You can contribute your time and talents and you can support organizations that work to train farmers, healthcare workers, and educators. Your thoughts, your actions, and your words will join with others to change the world, and you can help spread the word by emailing this page to a friend or getting a PDF file of The Seven Facts suitable for printing and sharing with friends.

The Praxis Ethiopia Foundation is an independent, US-based, 501(c)(3) publicly-supported charity created to help end extreme poverty in Ethiopia and sub-Sahara Africa