Poverty may seem like a big issue, best left to the politicians and policy makers. But ordinary people like you and I have a responsibility to do our part to end poverty too. There are plenty of things we can all do to help redistribute wealth and plenty more fairly. The list below is just an appetiser to get you started:
1. Buy Fair Trade Products
By choosing Fair Trade products you are doing your bit to ensure that producers in developing countries are getting paid a fair price for their goods. You empower them to live with dignity beyond subsistance and exploitation. Paying a fair price for their work enables them to put food on the table for their families, send their children to school and plan for their futures.
Check out World of Good, Ganesha and Tribes & Nations for Fair Trade goodies!
2. Let your Elected Representatives know You Care
Write to your elected officials and let them know that making poverty history is important to you - whether it be in other countries or in your own. Remind your Representatives at all levels of Government that Poverty is an issue they need to address.
3. Find out where you are on the Global Rich List
Think you don't have enough to spare anything for those less fortunate than you? Put your income in perspective with the Global Rich List. Cultivate a sense of abundance and gratitude and you may be surprised how much you can find to share with those in need - whether it be time, money, skills or possessions.
Volunteer in your own community - or check out the UN Online Volunteering Service. They connect development organisations and volunteers over the internet. They have assignments ranging from the translation of documents to creating audio files for online ESL courses to sourcing donations of used computers.
5. Take a Vacation
Need a break? Why not make it a worthwhile one and take a volunteer vacation? You'll get to see the world, connect with some wonderful people - and make a positive contribution. Take a look at Global Volunteers, Global Vision International and IVPA (International Volunteer Programs Association).