International Day for the Eradication of Poverty 17 October

18 October 2019

"One of the keys to ending child poverty is addressing poverty in the household, from which it often stems. Access to quality social services must be a priority."

-- UN Secretary-General António Guterres

In a world characterized by an unprecedented level of economic development, technological means and financial resources, that millions of persons are living in extreme poverty is a moral outrage. Poverty is not solely an economic issue, but rather a multidimensional phenomenon that encompasses a lack of both income and the basic capabilities to live in dignity.

Persons living in poverty experience many interrelated and mutually reinforcing deprivations that prevent them from realizing their rights and perpetuate their poverty, including:

  • dangerous work conditions
  • unsafe housing
  • lack of nutritious food
  • unequal access to justice
  • lack of political power
  • limited access to health care

This year marks the 27th anniversary of the declaration by the General Assembly, in its resolution 47/196 of 22 December 1992, of 17 October as the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty. This year also marks the 32nd anniversary of the Call to Action by Father Joseph Wresinski -- which inspired the observance of October 17 as the World Day for Overcoming Extreme Poverty -- and the recognition by the United Nations of the day as the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty.

2019 Theme: Acting Together to Empower Children, their Families and Communities to End Poverty

This year marks the 30th anniversary of the adoption of the Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) on 20 November 1989. This landmark human rights treaty sets out the civil, political, economic, social and cultural rights of every child, regardless of their race, religion or abilities.

In particular, the Convention recognizes the right of every child to a standard of living adequate for the child's physical, mental, spiritual, moral and social development. Poverty hurts children's development and, in turn, leads to lower income and health in adulthood. When child poverty is recognized as a denial of children's human rights then people in positions of responsibility and power are legally bound to promote, protect and fulfil children's rights. Above all, it is imperative to recognize and address the specific discriminations experienced by the girl child.

Invitation

Join us on 17 October for the Commemoration of the International Day at UN Headquarters in New York. Please register by 11 October 2019.

Read more about this year's theme.

Join the #EndPoverty global campaign

Why Do We Mark International Days?

International days are occasions to educate the public on issues of concern, to mobilize political will and resources to address global problems, and to celebrate and reinforce achievements of humanity. The existence of international days predates the establishment of the United Nations, but the UN has embraced them as a powerful advocacy tool. More information available here.

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