Barira holds a bowl of nutritious moringa grown at her community garden. She leads the fight against child hunger with her local student government.
Hunger and Livelihoods
Hunger impacts one out of every nine people on earth and one in four of the world’s children are stunted due to malnutrition. An increasing number of young people live in a state of poverty, unemployment and/or underemployment. Over one-fourth of young people in the world cannot find a job paying more than $1.25 per day1, the international threshold of extreme poverty. Three quarters of young workers ages 15-29 are employed in the informal sector2, increasing the possibility of exploitative or hazardous working conditions.
Save the Children’s own research suggests that income shortages in poorer households, when combined with shocks such as natural disasters or conflict, reinforce poor health and nutrition and thereby lead to higher rates of child deaths. Hunger also keeps children out of school and limits their ability to concentrate once in school. Studies conducted by Save the Children indicate that learning achievement among children from poor families is systemically lower than their peers. Finally, Save the Children’s Household Economy Approach (HEA) outcome analyses have found that the cycle of vulnerability due to chronic hunger and a lack of livelihoods security may lead poorer households and children to pursue unsustainable and dangerous livelihoods opportunities, to withdraw children from school, or to encourage early child marriage or harmful child labor.
Food security, livelihoods protection and strengthening, and poverty alleviation programs are an essential underpinning to ensuring the survival, education and protection of children, such that the intergenerational cycle of poverty can be broken.
To address this, Save the Children:
- Provides food assistance to families following a natural disaster or emergency.
- Builds household and community resilience to food security and economic shocks and stresses.
- Strengthens socio-economic conditions to improve standards of living and the ability of families to provide for their children.
- Provides youth with the skills and linkages they need to earn and manage a decent income.
Explore Our Hunger and Livelihoods Programs
1 Source: http://www.ilo.org/wcmsp5/groups/public/---ed_emp/documents/publication/wcms_413826.pdf
2 Source: Shehu, Erin and Björn Nilsson. Informal Employment Among Youth: Evidence from 20 School-to-Work Transition Survey
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