Poverty remains one of the biggest threats to a country’s development. By country’s development, one implies to the young population development of a country. It is a proven fact, that a country gets high on development only when its population is healthy and happy.
However, the harsh reality lies in the gut-wrenching truth of society. The truth of malnutrition, hunger, food insecurity, and striking poverty. This is a recurrent problem that poor/third world countries face very often. They lack proper food supplies and providing basic facilities to their citizens.
Although, a whole population is a sufferer in such situations. But, the children of a particular country are the worst hits.
If we go by the initial definition of poverty, it would be not having enough resources to avail necessities of life. This includes basic shelter, clothing, food, and clean water. However, in current times, basic education and healthcare have also been added to the list.
Numerous people in a country belong to the poorer strata of society. People for whom getting two meals per day is a distant dream. The same people who do not have clothes to cover themselves within cold weather.
However, when we see adult people in such a dreadful situation, it invokes a sense of terrible sympathy in us. But, when we see little children in the same situation, it moves some nerve within us. It makes us realize our privilege, and how some people are not even close to basic necessities. Therefore, privilege and luxury is a far off dream for them.
Poverty and Children
A state of poverty can take a heavy toll on a child. This notion of children getting badly affected cannot be debated. It is a state of complete melancholy and dreariness for children belonging to the poor background of society.
Let us look at some of the regular problems they face. The daily basis hurdles, they have to cross.
Children who are relatively from a poor background, face a lot of discrimination from society. They do not have friends and lack social interaction. This mainly happens due to inherent stereotypes of people against the poor, owing to their financial status.
These children do not even get to eat one meal per day. This happens because their parents do not have a fixed income. A regular income guarantees inflow of regular food.
However, with no guarantee of income every day, a fixed amount of food supply for the family also comes into question. Therefore, most of these children dwell in malnutrition and hunger.
Almost 690 million people in the year 2019 went hungry all around the world. Within this, a huge amount of proportion would have been children. When something as grave as hunger strikes in, the children go to bed with hungry stomachs.
Consequently, this can lead up to a situation of death due to hunger and starvation. This gives rise to the question of food insecurity in the whole world. The reason that children are dying out of empty stomachs is not only due to poverty. Food insecurity also has a major role to play in this.
Well, what is the exact definition of food insecurity? It refers to the state of un-access to a healthy and nutritious food supply. Food insecurity can strike out of extreme poverty. In a situation when a whole family, consisting of children dies out of not getting access to food, it becomes a condition to worry about.
Food Insecurity and Children
Photo by Sadman Chowdhury from Pexels
Just imagine a child, going days after days without enough food to it. In particularly poorer countries like India, more than half of the population has to bear the brunt of food insecurity.
Food insecurity implies a condition with no accessibility or availability of nutritious food or minimum food for that matter.
Let us look at how food insecurity can have grave consequences on children, especially the poor ones.
It is very obvious, that if you do not intake nutrients within you, you will not turn out to be healthy. Therefore, children not getting proper access to food that contains protein and nutrients, lead to a downfall of their physical health structure.
Chronic Health Issues
A degrading physical health structure will anyway lead to chronic diseases.
Our body is a machine that requires proper nurturing to work well. This nurturing comes in the form of proper food and diet. However, children who struggle to get one meal a day cannot even think about diet and protein.
Henceforth, they fall prey to devastating health disorders which sometimes also result in death.
The sufferers of food insecurity and its very prevalence create an unsaid social division in society. One group belongs to the privileged class while the other belongs to the dreary class. The other struggles to get food day and night, and hence is often ridiculed by the apparent “well off”. This leads to the social stigmatization of the poor.
Many a time, it can be seen that the poor taking their lives themselves. It has also been witnessed that they killing their children with their own hands. This behavior comes out of a fear of suffering. They just want this endless suffering to end forever.
Henceforth, instead of struggling all day to get some amount of food and necessities, they end up giving their lives. They end up killing their children for their good and benefit.
This depicts the horrendous reality of our insufficient society.
Poverty and Food Insecurity are wrenching children’s lives. They are an equivalent threat to any nation as compared to any war or military action. This is because war kills people, and poverty and hunger are also killing people. So, both sides anyway lead to death.
However, the saddest part strikes when children die owing to absolutely no fault of theirs. It is not pertinently their fault that they are born in a place where their family cannot afford food/resources. Therefore, children paying the price of poverty with life is beyond the measures of acceptable.
Poverty kills by using a weapon called, ‘hunger’.
For more articles, click here: Food Wastage- A Global Crisis