I’m a senior in college, living in Durango, Colorado, and grew up in a nice suburb of Chicago. I have a loving family, I’ve always had a warm bed to sleep, more food than I need, and have the privilege of pursuing higher education. I’ve been extremely fortunate in my life and live among the top 1% income brackets in the world. All of this comes down to luck.
On the other hand, about 650 million people just happened to be born into extreme poverty. Extreme poverty is defined as living on $1.90 or less a day (price adjusted to living in the U.S.). Because of this, 15,000 children die every single day, due to poverty related causes. This includes things like diarrhea, malaria, tuberculosis, and intestinal worms. Illnesses that are completely treatable are taking the lives of thousands everyday because they don’t have the resources available to them. I never knew the specifics of the massive issue caused by extreme poverty until my roommate started a club at our college called One for the World.
One for the World is a non-profit that focuses on educating college students about the issue of extreme poverty and how donating to data driven charities can make a tangible difference in the lives of people living on less than $2 a day. They do this by working with college students around the world to start chapters and create a movement of students trying to revolutionize charitable giving to end extreme poverty. One for the World supports charities that have been researched in depth by a charity evaluator called GiveWell. The charities need to be transparent, have room for more funding, are cost effective, and are highly researched. This ensures the money received by these charities can do as much good as possible.
This creates an amazing opportunity to make a tangible dent in extreme poverty. It’s a call to action for many living in high income countries to donate what they can. Our responsibility is to give of the resources that we have in excess to those who don’t. This is not an act of generosity but simply a responsibility to give what you can. Because, most of us would agree that living on 99% of our income is completely reasonable.
I remember my roommate first telling me about One for the World and how part of me resisted the idea of giving 1% of my future income for the rest of my life. However, after that day, I became a lot more aware of the comforts I was spending my money on and how simply making coffee at home a few times a week instead of going to a coffee shop is enough to protect a few children from malaria or provide a years worth of vitamin A supplementation for several kids. I realized that donating 1% of my income to these charities was a responsibility as someone who believes that every human life is of equal value.
I think everyone shares the desire to do the right thing and follow their moral compass and One for the World is an amazing opportunity to continue to do that. If anyone is interested in learning more about One for the World and the charities they support please don’t hesitate to reach out to me. You can also find a lot of information on their website as well as GiveWell’s website. Thanks for taking the time to read my thoughts and I hope it can inspire action.
Donational Link: https://donational.org/oftw-fort-lewis
One for the World: https://www.1fortheworld.org/