In definition, we can describe poverty as not having enough material possessions or income for a person’s needs. Poverty is at a high rate in some parts of Uganda, and in this, we see that people are unable to sustain themselves.
According to statistics by Macro Trends, Uganda’s poverty rate was at 87.80% in 2016, a 0.7% increase from 2012 based on a headcount ratio which was at $5.50 a day as per the percentage of the population living on less than $5.50 a day. There are two kinds of poverty which I categorized into two namely; Absolute Poverty and Relative Poverty.
Absolute poverty is the complete lack of the means necessary to meet personal needs such as food, clothing and shelter. In this situation, it has been consistent over time where people cannot afford these basic needs to help themselves and sustain themselves. There is a high reduction of human basic needs such as food, safe drinking, water, sanitation facilities, health, shelter, education and information.
Relative poverty, on the other hand, is where there is a measure of income inequality, in this situation, people cannot meet a minimal level of living standards compared to other people and in such manner, some are way high above others while some are low but still meeting what is required but at a struggle.
Some effects of poverty that were and are still observed include;
1. Poor health: where there is a lack of access to proper health facilities, clean water and sanitation. And through this, the diseases that are rampant are malaria, HIV/AIDS and tuberculosis to mention but a few.
2. Offence: this is where jobs are scarce and people are not willing to pay you for doing something that one is willing to do thus unemployment leading to impoverishment and later to the offence. In this situation, people are not willing to take on other people into jobs but rather than family members.
3. Uneducated (lack of education): the children who are exposed to extreme poverty in this situation usually have trouble with cognitive development, speech, managing stress, and adverse behaviour. Research studies done have proved this to be true.
Ways through which poverty can be terminated or reduced;
Here are some of the solutions to end poverty within the society;
1. Boosting economic upturn/growth:
The profits acquired by the economic upturn should be shared to the poorest people so that they can also benefit, which in return betters their lives and those who are in their care such as family.
2. End all forms of poverty:
It’s not about the incomes but also their access to things like water, health, education, housing, security, information. The government including other parties that drive the well being of their citizens should strive to ensure that basic needs such as clean water, security and housing are available at low costs or free of charge.
3. Entrust national governments to end poverty:
Governments in developing countries like Uganda should consign to elevate their citizens above the poverty line. They can make use of all kinds of relief forms, incentives and other strategies to ensure that the citizens have what they need such as free medical care for those in poverty-stricken areas.
4. Equal Education:
Children, as well as the adults, need to acquire knowledge and life skills. They need to realize their full potential which eliminates cognitive development problems among others. In this case, it helps them break barriers.
5. Access to health care:
It is of great significance for governments to build more health care systems as well as repair them, train more health workers, and pay them well and on time, invest in genuine equipment and medicine so that people can grow up healthy and strong. Doing so will also ensure that people have easy access to medical facilities.
6. Sanitation and community developments:
There is significance to setup/build latrines, community water points and organizations to ensure that the continued management and maintenance of these facilities is done on a regular basis.
When governments and organizations play their part in ensuring that communities have safe and well-managed facilities, there is a low chance of having people fall ill due to infections and other factors. There should also be the involvement of community members within projects so that it drives unity and responsibility.
As Uganda continues to struggle with the issue of poverty, we have to remain positive and goal-driven knowing that the country is able to do better than it is today or tomorrow.
Author: Esther Lukayi
Esther loves writing and reading and she is also very passionate about kids. She is the CEO of Malaika Ushers and is aspiring to be a system analyst.