Child Poverty In Africa

Because we live in the 21st century, a lot of people might assume that there probably would be no child poverty left in the world. People would also easily come to the conclusion that no one would die due to extreme hunger. And to top it all off, people would at least assume that things would be changing for the better. This might be true for a lot of other cases and instances, but for the children living in Africa, this statement is nothing but melodramatic. Not only is the situation of child poverty at a very dire state right now, but things are said to get worse by the day. We will try studying the reasons ad factors that contribute to the worsening situation of child poverty in Africa, and how we have got to the horrific situation that we get to see today.

Before making any major claims or pointing any fingers, the right thing to do would be to discuss what the statistics dictate. They would probably be triggering for a lot of people who have got sentimental relations with Africa, or humanity in general, but the truth cannot be changed due to the existence of emotions. Figures released by the Brookings Institutions’ series on Africa titled ‘Africa on focus’ states that as of 2015, most of the poor people around the world live in Sub-Saharan Africa. To make things more clear, amongst the 28 most poor nations of the world, 27 of them happen to be Sub-Saharan African. And since children also constitute a proportional part of the population, they too tend to be in greater amounts than anywhere else on the globe. This not only means that children in Africa are immensely in poverty, but there also happens to be a saturation of the most poverty-stricken children in Africa.

With that, things are not projected to get better any time soon. They will only get worse with the prolonging of the existing prevailing problems in Africa. A study by the Overseas Development Institute – a governmental organization of the United Kingdom estimates that nearly two in five children will be living in extreme situations of poverty by the year 2030. And right before that in the proceeding decade, approximately 87 Million newborns will be born in situations of extreme poverty. To top it all of, by the 2030s, child poverty in Africa will constitute more than half of the entire global population living in poverty. If this does not worry you, then probably nothing ever would.

Several members of the global literati have discussed the possible reasons behind why such a catastrophic situation exists but none has yet provided an appropriate solution to eradicate the problem. Considering the reasons given behind the existence of extreme child poverty, there probably could be no single instrument solution. For instance, a scientific study concluded that various factors simultaneously stimulate the creation of scenarios of extreme poverty. The considered corruption and issues related to poor governance to be of primary importance. Followed by those two were poor existing infrastructure, nearing zero employment availability, inefficient allocation of resources, and wars. A surprising revelation made by those researchers, and others, such as at “Share The World’s Resources’ report”, was that the International Monetary Fund and the World bank not only not make things any better, but they also account for the aggravating situation in Africa. Their policies have been aiding poverty to flourish. Though it would be pretty pessimistic to call these failures deliberate, nevertheless, they owe the children of Africa a great deal to make things better.

Another major topic that requires immediate attention by stakeholders across the globe is the infant mortality rate. Not only the chances of women dying during labor happens to be humungous, but the chances of children going into their teen years also seem extremely grim. A huge proportion of children pass away during or right after birth due to the non-existence of basic medical services, many of them don’t make it past their fifth birthdays. According to a charitable organization’s estimates based in the United States known as the SOS Village, one in every eleven children in Africa does not make it past their fifth birthday. The apparent conclusion anyone could draw from these data estimates is that, not only are children in Africa prone to being in extreme situations of poverty, they are also probable to pass away before they could even transform into an adult.

Looking for ways to end this menace might turn out to be very exhausting, not only because there are so many factors involved that contribute to piling up poverty, but also because the people having stakes within Africa do not wish to bring any change. With the abundance of natural resources in Africa, this land tends to be a haven for resource-exploitation. With that, dictatorships and monarchy-like governments do not wish to elevate the status of their communities. Because they fear that any development made for the people might bring forth a social revolution that might topple their undeserving control for good. They find it more suited for their personal desires to leave the country and its people in a situation of despair, as pointed out in several studies conducted on the conditions of Africa.

With the inexistent infrastructure and barely any employment-creation opportunity for the people of Africa, there genuinely seems no way through which people and children, in particular, could be alleviated from poverty. The only way out of this situation is a fair redistribution of economical resources, which must come hand in hand with its oversight by the people who truly wish to see people of Africa prosper.

In conclusion, no sane mind could deny that African children need imminent attention for their mere survival. Now whether the call of help is responded appropriately by people who can actually make a difference is an entirely different matter. If things were to continue as the trends are forecasting now, there is no sparkle in the entire situation that anyone could spot. 

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