What do you think when you hear the word “poverty” ? We use the term when we see people residing on the footpaths, when kids with tattered clothes pester us for a few coins or when people with or without disability stretch their hands out in expectation of receiving something of value.
Such examples are just a fraction of what poverty is. For most of us poverty is a lack of basic amenities such as food, clothing and shelter but actually it is defined as the denial of choices and opportunities, a violation of human dignity. It means lack of basic capacity to participate effectively in the society.
It means not having enough to feed and clothe a family, not having access to education or health facilities. It means not having land to grow one’s food or the inability to earn one’s living, neither having access to credit. It means insecurity, powerlessness and exclusions of individuals, households and communities. It often implies living in marginal or fragile environments, without access to clean water or sanitation.
I thought long about the lifestyle of such people who are debarred from almost everything in the society and about the challenges they face in their everyday life. It’s not less than a tragedy to survive in circumstances which are completely below the standards of basic livelihood.
Can we visualize ourselves to breathe in an atmosphere where we are always abused, rebuked and stigmatized? Obviously not, never. But most of these people have been going through such struggle since their birth.
How many times have we left the meal served to us on our plates, not being able to eat more? Well, there are some people who haven’t had anything since weeks and are sustaining on just water. How many times do we shop for ourselves, entering into every big store that our eyes get glued to? Well there are some people, who don’t even have a proper piece of cloth to cover themselves from the rain, sun or the biting cold.
The government has been doing its part to reduce the level of poverty but have we done anything yet? If not, let’s do it. “Hug With Warmth” is a movement started by few Delhi based college students to achieve “No winter caused deaths.” The movement says – “You yourself are a change maker, no need to rely on the government or NGOs.” We all should take a pledge to educate the under privileged to brighten their future and make people aware of their rights and encourage them to take up occupations. Lets accept them and make them realize that we care.
Lets lend our hand towards the cause and contribute in making a change. I know its not impossible, let us share our fortune with those who are in need for it.