Global Poverty Caitlin Quattrochio

Millions of people globally suffer from poverty. The overall well being of these people are compromised due to the lack of infrastructure and resources. One billion children do not have access to necessary life and developmental services. An overwhelming four million children are dying within the first month of their life. The rates of illness and suffering in these poor countries need to decrease. Education, something that most take for granted, is an opportunity children in impoverished countries dream of. However there is over a hundred million children not attending schools globally.


Education is an essential part of living a successful and fulfilled life. In these poor and developing countries, families have difficulties affording food or shelter, making education of little priority. Parents also need their children to work from an early age in order to help support the family. This leaves no time or resources for the child to get an education and later a successful career.


Due to lack of infrastructure in these extremely poor countries, the water supply is often hazardous and inconsistent. There may not be indoor plumbing and proper disposal of waste which can contaminate the little water supply that is present. Each village or neighborhood may have one water source forcing people to walk far to gather their water. This is a major problem for sanitation and health issues.


Finding stable and consistent jobs is difficult. With no definitive paycheck, benefits or reassurance you have a job every day, it makes families struggle financially and emotionally. Families have no choice but to make their young children work in efforts to add contributions. There is no room to save for money, there is barely enough money to feed them.


There is more than enough food produced for every person in the world but millions still starve, mostly due to food being unaffordable. Woman expecting children that do not have sufficient nutrition can lead to their child having birth defects and being underdeveloped. The affected child does not have the potential to learn and grow compared to unaffected children. Suffering and struggle continues.


Natural disasters can destroy everything a family has worked for. Farmers may lose their crops which is their main source of income, houses may be destroyed and people could be injured. In a place of extreme poverty, it proves very difficult to rebuild what has been damaged. This is why emergency and developmental aid are so valuable to poor countries.

In efforts to eliminate global poverty, the United States has provided foreign assistance to these underdeveloped countries. This assistance supports global peace, security, development and humanitarian relief in times of need. Predicted for 2017, the United States plans to spend approximately $34 billion on foreign assistance which is divided between over 100 countries around the globe. This funding is divided to different major categories:

Health: $9.3 Billion

Peace and Security: $8.3 Billion

Humanitarian Assistance: $6.0 Billion

Economic Development: $3.6 Billion

Democracy, Human Rights and Governance: $2.7 Billion

Environment: $1.3 Billion

Education and Social Services: $1.1 Billion


One of the most important goal of foreign assistance is providing accessible and effective healthcare to improve global health. From not having adequate care and resources, 5.9 million children a year will die from causes that are preventable. This is why it is so important for the US to give assistance. Innocent people are dying when it can be prevented. Even though Americans have easy access to health care and treatments, communicable diseases can be transmitted from these countries and affect us. For example there are over 36.9 million people globally that are HIV positive. By targeting the main sources, it will reduce the global rates and stop the spread of these illnesses. Trained professionals need to be provided in areas of need to ensure care to those who desperately need it. Out of the 9.6 million tuberculosis cases a year, nearly ⅓ will not receive the proper care.

What is being done to solve these issues?
  • USAID is helping decrease rates of maternal and child deaths through family planning, malaria and nutrition awareness and advancement. Since 1990, child mortality rates have been cut in half.
  • The Emerging Pandemic Threats program aids in detecting and preventing the spreads of illnesses or diseases. Tuberculosis has decreased since 1990 by about 50 percent.
  • USAID is on the forefront of the HIV/AIDS crisis. Through PEPFAR, 9.5 million are on life saving treatments. Millions are able to be treated by installing science, technology, support and innovation all over the world.

In Malawi, Africa, a quarter of the deaths of newborns are due to asphyxia. Globally, 700,000 deaths per year are due to birthing complications including asphyxia. Necessary and affordable life saving resuscitation equipment is often unavailable in underdeveloped countries. Through the program Helping Babies Breathe, countries are provided with more resources. In Malawi in 2014, 50 percent of newborns had access to resuscitation thanks to this program compared to nearby Ethiopia with only 8 percent of newborns having access to this equipment.

Programs like these are shaping our future and progress in the efforts to end global poverty. It is working to save thousands of infants all over the world. Through this program over 300,000 healthcare providers in 77 countries across the globe have been trained in newborn resuscitation. By continuing the training and providing the live saving equipment, Helping Babies Breathe which is supported by USAID will continue to benefit and improve upcoming generations.



  1. “A Neonatal Resuscitation Curriculum in Malawi, Africa: Did It Change In- Hospital Mortality?” Retrieved from:
  2. Retrieved from:
  3. “Global Health.” Retrieved from:
  4. “Global Poverty 101.” Retrieved from:
  5. “Living on One Dollar Change Series.” Retrieved from:
  6. “Newborn Health.” USAID. gov. Retrieved from:


  1. (cover picture)
  2. (Poor children learning)
  3. (Woman w water)
  4. (family farming)
  5. (malnurished child)
  6. (natural disaster)
  7. (woman inspecting child's mouth)
  8. (baby receiving shot)
  9. (mother getting prenatal care)
  10. (USAID)
  11. (baby yawning)

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