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What one extra dollar can do to change a life this holiday season

Around eight percent of the global population lives in poverty.  This portion of the population lives on less than $2.25 US per day! 648 million people live below the poverty line, yet their lives change drastically with just one extra dollar a day. Learn how the Advancing Life® Foundation is making a difference one dollar at a time and how your donation can have a life-changing impact on a family in need.

Extreme poverty is eradicated $1 – 2 at a time

According to the book Factfulness, the average United States citizen lives off of $164 a day. This amount is drastically different from the $1 or $2 a day the world’s poorest have. It may seem insignificant, but even small monetary changes make a big impact on a person’s daily access to resources. Advancing Life Foundation volunteers witnessed this change when visiting a Cambodian who had recently gained access to clean water. The water helped the family grow and sell food, and have better health, which in turn allowed them to gain employment giving them access to money to build a nicer home. All of this progress happened after they gained access to a freshwater well six months earlier.

“In February of 2022, we were able to help a family move their home,” says foundation chair KimMarie Larsen. “The ability to use clean water from a well we had installed a few months earlier was already making a difference in their lives. They were able to get materials to upgrade from a tin shack to a home made of brick. It’s a wonderful example of how clean water well helped someone drastically improve their situation in such a short time.”

Most common causes of poverty

Hunger, food insecurity, and malnutrition 

When a person doesn’t have enough food, they lack the energy and strength to work. Their immune system weakens from malnutrition, leaving them susceptible to illness and death. If a mother is malnourished during pregnancy, children can be born with health issues that can compound over time with continued malnourishment. This vicious cycle continues with malnourished children becoming malnourished mothers, who then give birth to more malnourished babies. Malnourished children are four times more likely to die and will go on to earn 22% less than their well-fed peers.

ASEA Advancing Life Foundation has partnered with US Hunger Project, Feeding America, Global Foodbanking Network, and others to feed over 3 million people since 2020.

Lack of access to clean water and hygienic sanitation

More than two billion people do not have access to clean water at home. Women and girls collectively spend around 200 million hours every day walking long distances to fetch water. This precious time could be used to earn an income or receive an education—both of which lead to a greater likelihood of getting out of poverty.

Contaminated water leads to a host of diseases, causing chronic health issues or even life-threatening illnesses. Poor water infrastructure for sanitation and hygiene can create barriers to escaping poverty, such as keeping girls out of school during menstruation or leaving them vulnerable to assault or trafficking while out collecting water.

ASEA Advancing Life Foundation has partnered with Vision Cambodia, Engage Now Africa, TECHO, and WHO Lives to help over 72,000 people gain access to clean water and sanitation since 2019.

Lack of education opportunity 

Most of those below the poverty line do not have access to education. UNESCO estimates that 171 million people could be lifted out of extreme poverty if they graduated from school with basic reading skills. Without a job or livelihood, people are more likely to face poverty. Climate change is causing dwindling access to productive land and overexploitation of resources can affect people’s ability to provide for themselves. Oftentimes, families will pull children out of school when they lack money for books and uniforms. Many girls are sold or married off in order to keep their immediate families from starving to death.

ASEA Advancing Life Foundation has partnered with Engage Now Africa, CHOICE Humanitarian, Vision Cambodia, Cooperative Education, Dig Deep, and Speak Up For the Poor to fund school construction and renovation, courses and certifications, libraries, computer labs, and educational opportunities for 2,600 people this year.

Inequality and group marginalization

For a population to thrive, all groups must be involved in the decision-making process. Oftentimes, issues like gender inequality, cultural caste systems, and racial or tribal marginalization lead to economic and social inequalities that leave the young and weak at particular risk.

ASEA Advancing Life Foundation has partnered with Safe House Project and Operation Underground Railroad to secure the safety of 497 trafficking victims in Cambodia, Central America, the Middle East, Ukraine, Malaysia, and the United States.

Every dollar makes a difference

Giving back is essential because it makes the world a better place for everyone. Donating a few dollars a month is a simple way to give back and help those in need. A single donation can change a person’s life forever. No matter the size, your donation spreads positivity and creates a ripple effect that leads to actual change for a better world.