A life lived in poverty is always about scrambling.
Poverty is hunger.
Lack of shelter.
Not having a job or career prospect.
Not having access to education.
Losing a child to illness due to unclean water.
Being sick and not having the means to receive medical attention.
Cursed with poverty, people [not simply people, they are our relatives, our distant cousins, friends of friends, people just a few handshakes away in the global network in which we are all connected] waste opportunities not because they are lazy because they cannot see them.
The latest statistics say that 13.8 million people in South Africa live in extreme poverty.
This means if this auditorium takes about 200 people, 50 in this room live in extreme poverty. 50. Half the world lives on less that $2.50 a day.
We are so used to poverty that we are immune to the consequences of what it does to society.
According to 2014 World Bank statistics, South Africa spends 9% of Total GDP on health Care. Comparable countries spend about 6% of Total GDP on Health Care.
However, South Africa is ranked 119 out of 195 countries in health care.
We spend more healthcare, but we get less outcomes.
South Africa spends about 8% of Total GDP on education but in 2016 it ranked 137 out of 139 at the overall quality of education.
Again we spend more on education and get less outcomes.
This pattern of aggressive spending and disappointing returns in the social sector is not limited to the South Africa.
The United States of America spends more money per capita on health care, yet it lags behind many of its peers.
It spends more on education, yet it comes in 24th out of 29 for mathematical literacy test.
We can safely say that the problem is not money. The money is there, but the solution lies elsewhere.
The problem of poverty can be solved in our lifetime.