The world celebrates the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty on October 17 every year. Initiated and promoted as an integral part of the UN Millennium Development goals, the global leaders have realized the significance of poverty eradication for the development of world economy.
It all started in 1993, when the United Nations General Assembly designated this day to promote awareness of the need to eradicate poverty and destitution in all countries. It is not at all surprising to note poverty alleviation remains at the core of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and the development of the post-2015 development agenda.
Building a sustainable future requires us to intensify our efforts towards eradicating extreme poverty and discrimination, and ensuring that everyone can fully exercise their human rights. The theme for 2015 is “Building a sustainable future: Coming together to end poverty and discrimination”.
This year, is however quite special since we mark the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty as we adopt the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. The Agenda, which succeeds the Millennium Development Goals, contains 17 new and ambitious goals. Ending poverty in all its forms everywhere is the crux of the Agenda.
The International Day for the Eradication of Poverty promotes dialogue and understanding between people living in poverty and their communities, and society at large. “It represents an opportunity to acknowledge the efforts and struggles of people living in poverty, a chance for them to make their concerns heard and a moment to recognize that poor people are in the forefront in the fight against poverty.” (United Nations, Report of the Secretary General)
The full participation of people living in poverty, particularly in the decisions that affect their lives and communities, must be at the centre of policies and strategies to build a sustainable future. In this way, we can guarantee that our planet and our societies can fulfill the needs and aspirations of everyone for this and future generations.