POVERTY

I know, I know. I can hear readers saying ‘didn’t you begin the blogging year talking about homelessness, and now you’re following up with ‘poverty’? Besides, aren’t homelessness and poverty pretty much the same thing?. Well, I promise this is not going to be a running theme with me. Its just that those two topics are pet issues of mine and so I chose to begin the year with them. Now that I’ve gotten these two topics off my chest however, I will be free to move on to other topics. I promise.

Although the concept of homelessness and poverty seem redundant, there is, in fact, a distinction between them. A poor person for instance, is not necessarily homeless.

See the scene below of a poor Mexican father and his son. They are not homeless, but they are most certainly impoverished.

Ordinary poverty is generally defined as the lack of a certain amount of material possessions or money. Absolute poverty however, is the inability to afford basic human needs, such as clean and fresh water, nutrition, health care, education, clothing and shelter. Today nearly 2 billion people are estimated to live in absolute poverty. In the U.S alone more than 46 million americans are impoverished according to the most recent census.

Here we find daily life on a hillside shanty town in Ensenada, Mexico.

Children in this rural Indian village have never known any lifestyle than this.

A volunteer nurse administers health care to an elderly Indian man.

Tai-O, is a small fishing village on Hong Kong’s Lantau Island, and a colorful tourist attraction for many. For those who fish for a living and who live on their stilt houses, life can be precarious, and poverty a way of life.

You may ask, what can we do? There are lots of worthy causes in this world and we all have our own problems. Truer words have not been spoken. I’d bet however, there are things we can do to help without having any negative impact on ourselves. For example, I am a photographer and can use my camera to shine a light on this issue. In fact, that’s exactly what I’m doing in this blog. I bet you too could find something of your own to contribute.
Think about it.

[See ya February 6]