Created on November 29, 2023
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Poverty - a Global Issue
My research has shown that there are several causes of poverty, and that poverty can have huge effects on a child's health and education.
No poverty is the first UN goal
Poverty and Education
Children living in homes facing poverty can also face issues when it comes to their education. Poverty does have a correlation with education, and unfortunately this correlation does not have positive outcomes.
Poor education can cause poverty as lack of educational attainment can lead to unemployment, which results in a lack of income. Encouraging the importance of an education can allow children and youths to continue schooling and therefore have more chance of becoming employed in the future.
Those living in poverty may not be able to afford basic necessities, let alone equipment and resources for school. Lack of resources needed for an education like textbooks, computers and the internet, can lead to lack of at-home productivity and can limit potential. The cost of education and resources can be extortionate, especially university and higher education. Computers and internet resources can also cost hundreds of pounds, however most schools will accommodate this, by giving pupils laptops and textbooks on behalf of the institution.
Poverty can also impact one's education because of the mental, physical and social outcomes of it.
Poverty and Mental Health
Poverty can cause extremely poor mental health due to the issues that surround it, such as social stigmas and discrimination.
Being behind peers
Stigma and Shame
Poverty can cause children (and adults) to feel socially excluded because they are behind their peers financially and potentially academically. This can have a detrimental impact on their mental health, as the mental consequences of social exclusion are devastating. These can include low self-esteem, depression and anxiety.
Social discrimination can have several psychological effects. These can then worsen poor mental health that has already stemmed from poverty. Discrimination can lead to heightened stress and negative self image, especially for those experiencing poverty. A poor sense of self-worth can also surface, particularly in parents, as they may compare themselves to other caregivers who can provide more for their children financially. Social discrimination can ultimately cause depression and anxiety in adults and families. These conditions can then become hereditary, leading to poverty and poor mental health through generations.
Poverty has a lot of stigma surrounding it, which can have drastic social effects. Stigma is a negative preconception about a group of people because of how they are, in this instance, social/economic class. The social effects from this include limited social participation due to the fear of shame and stigma, which ultimately creates feelings of isolation. Stigma also lowers the self esteems of those affected, which can make mental health problems worse, and can lead to depression, anxiety, and extreme unworthy feelings.
Poverty and Physical Health
Over 6000 people die in Wales every year due to poverty. That's around 16 people per day. This can arise from physical issues.
Further health issues
Further health issues can stem from poverty, such as obesity. Despite the popular opinion that under-eating is more prominent in poorer families, poorer children can also experience obesity because their families cannot afford nutritious meals, and therefore opt for cheaper meals which may be high in saturated fats and sugars, therefore leading to obesity.
Food insecurity derived from poverty can have an immense affect on one's health, especially children. Malnutrition can come from food insecurity, because a home may not be able to afford nutritious foods that provide nutrients and vitamins fit for a human. This then can lead to deficiency in several important nutrients, like iron-deficiency anemia, scurvy (vitamin C deficiency) and rickets (Vitamin D deficiency). These problems can lead to poor development in children, and other issues in adults, like poor fertility and muscle mobility.
Respiratory problems can also be derived from poverty, due to overcrowded homes, poor nutrition, and the increased chances of smoking if you experience poverty during childhood. Poor housing can also contribute to respiratory issues, as breathing in mould or dampness can affect the lungs. Overcrowded homes can lead to respiratory issues because of the easier transmission of infections, and especially if smokers are living there, second-hand smoke can pass down to children. Smoking rates are also higher in low-income groups rather than higher, which then contributes to respiratory problems as well, as it is infamously known that smoking is bad for you.
Poor physical and mental health can affect education for a number of reasons. Physical health issues such as vitamin deficiency and malnutrition can cause fatigue and ill health, which then can lead to absence in school because the children are unwell. If the children do not attend school for a prolonged period of time, their poor attendance can obviously cause them to be behind their peers in school, which if goes on for a long time, can immensely affect educational progress and attainment. Poor mental health derived from poverty itself, or the stigma surrounding it for example, can lead to feelings of shame and embarassment. This can then limit social participation, including education. Students may be embarrassed of the shame and stigma surrounding their home situations, therefore may not attend school due to this. On the other hand, students who have come from deprived backgrounds may appreciate their education more, so they can maintain a good education and prevent themselves living in poverty later on in life.