Pakistan and its poverty…
Compiled By: Toobah Farooqi
Hope you like it!!!
Pakistan or officially, the Islamic Republic of Pakistan is rated one of the poorest countries in the world due to its high infant mortality rates, low adult literacy rates, low life expectancy, and not enough access to clean water, food, safe housing, healthcare and finally education. The main reasons why there are so many poor people in this country is because there is a lot of inflation there and the people cannot afford it.
Living conditions and life opportunities are very different in Pakistan between the very rich and the very poor. In this developing country, thousands of people live in poverty. They do not have enough food to eat due to expensive food rates in Pakistan and their access to water is scarce. Their shelter is poor and many have no proper home at all. Due to poverty, rates of disease and death are much higher in this country. Access to health care and education is limited. Pakistani Map
International organizations, non-government organizations such as WHO and Islamic Relief, and international governments and individuals are all working towards a better and fairer Pakistan. The Millennium Development Goals are also making an effort to reduce poverty and inequality in Pakistan.
Pakistan has one of the lowest infant mortality rates in the entire world. In Pakistan, every 87/1000 children will die under the age of 5 whereas in USA, every 7/1000 children will die under the age of 5. The number of deaths per 1000 babies under one year old is called infant mortality rate or IMR. The highest IMR is in Pakistan, the lowest is in Australia (example of developed country). There are strong links between poverty and IMR.
Infant Mortality in Pakistan is due to people living in remote areas. As a result, the government cannot deliver medical facilities to them and the poor people cannot travel to metro areas. People are less health conscious therefore diseases are spread such as malaria.
There is also a resistance to western medicines. The paramedical staff living and supporting in remote areas are not fully qualified. Based on their experience, they deliver services. Minor cases are survived but the complex ones result in infant’s death because of poor skills of supporting staff. There is tendency to rely less on western medicines accordingly people rely more on traditional medicines which causes the infant’s sickness to become worse.
One of the largest killers of infants in Pakistan is HIV/AIDS. Research shows that there are 15 million people nationwide with HIV. Three out of four young Pakistanis suffering from HIV are women and girls. Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) weakens the body’s defences against infection. Acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) is the collection of symptoms and infections that occur when HIV defeats the immune system.
Adult Literacy Rates…
Pakistan has the lowest adult literacy rates in the world. Some of the main causes of these are that the people don’t have enough money, transport inconveniences or because of the critical conditions outside the house.
Millennium Development Goal aims to enable all adults and children everywhere know how to read, write and calculate. Goal 3 aims to promote gender equity and empower women. This means that girls and women should have the same opportunities as boys and men, including secondary and tertiary education and employment.
There is a strong relationship between education, fertility rates and poverty. The more education women have, the more likely they are to have small families. As literacy rates increase, poverty declines.
The provision of education has improved nationwide in the last 10 years. The proportion of adult literacy programs have helped to spread basic reading skills in Pakistan. However there is still a wide gap between Australia and Pakistan in educational resources such as computers and books, and access to higher education. Women learning how to read and write
How long someone can expect to live is called life expectancy. In Pakistan, it is gradually increasing. This is largely due to a drop in infections such as cholera, measles and influenza. A similar drop is not occurring in this developing world. Pakistan has the lowest levels of life expectancy and the highest levels in the world. Old Beggar in Pakistan
Life expectancy contains the average number of years to be lived by a group of people born in the same year, if mortality at each age remains constant in the future. Life expectancy includes total population as well as the male and the female components.
Life expectancy at birth is also a measure of overall quality of life in a country and summarises the mortality at all ages. It can also be thought of indicating the potential return on investment in human capital is necessary for the calculation of various actuarial measures.
According to WHO, data published in April 2012, life expectancy in Pakistan is: Male 63.8 years, female 67.5 years and total life expectancy is 65.6 which gives Pakistan a World Life Expectancy ranking of 131.
Access to clean water
Unsafe water, coupled with a lack of basic sanitation, kills at least 1000 children under the age of five each year in Pakistan. Halving the number of people who do not have access to safe water and sanitation is also a part of Millennium Development Goal # 7. According to the World Health Organisation, there is good chance that Pakistan will achieve the safe water target by 2015.
Like other natural resources, water is unevenly distributed. Many countries, including Pakistan, do not have enough water. Women and children often have to walk for hours to collect water. In Pakistan, the daily chore of hauling water is usually carried out by women and girls.
Lack of access to safe water is connected to poverty. Wealthy countries can afford to build dams or use technology to improve water quality. Although Australia is the driest inhabited continent, Australians are among highest consumers of water in the world – about 350 litres per person per day. People in Pakistan, Africa and South America use 50-100 litres per day.
Water scarcity is becoming a major threat to human health, the environment and the global food supply. Climate change is likely to bring more frequent and more severe droughts to many susceptible regions, further reducing the amount of available water.
It is not enough for people to have an adequate amount of water. Water also must be a sufficient quality for drinking and washing - it should not be polluted or contain disease-carrying organisms. Toilets and sewerage systems are important to get rid of waste and prevent disease. Without them, micro-organisms from faeces end up in the water that people drink from rivers, ponds and wells. One in every six people in Pakistan does not have safe drinking water. One in three lacks basic sanitation.
Thousands of people die each year from water–borne diseases such as cholera and typhoid. Such diseases are caused by drinking contaminated water or by eating food preparing using safe water. Many water-borne infections cause diarrhoea, which leads to dehydration. Diarrhoea is a major cause of childhood deaths. These deaths can be treated with proper healthcare.
Children forced to bathe and drink this water...
Access to food
Every day, thousands and thousands of people suffer from extreme poverty and hunger. They do not have enough money (or sometimes no money at all) to buy or produce their enough food or for their basic needs. Halving the number of hungry people in the world is top of the list of the Millennium Development Goals.
There is enough food to feed every single person in Pakistan. Pakistan Hunger is not due to unequal distribution of wealth.
Factors causing hunger include:
* Many people in Pakistan are trapped in a cycle of poverty. Families are usually large and few jobs are available, particularly for those without skills. People cannot afford to pay for food, let alone housing, healthcare, and education. Little girl begging for food * Natural Disasters – for example, droughts, floods and earthquakes can cause famine, which is a severe shortage of food in a region. Famine leads to skyrocketing food prices. Some sections of the population, usually the poorest, are more likely to face starvation than others. * Wars displace thousands of people and cause some of the Pakistan’s worst hunger emergencies. * Export agricultural products to pay debt. Many countries are in debt and reduce their debt and reduce their debt by exporting the food they grow.
Access to safe housing...
Along with food and water, shelter (protection from the elements) is a basic need. Among the 5.5 thousand poor people living in Pakistan, about one in four lives in poor housing. Others have no home at all because they have been relocated by war or must move to search for food, water or employment.
More and more people are moving to cities in search of a better life. One billion people live in over-crowded slums on the edges of cities where there is often no access to safe water and sanitation, resulting in disease and other health problems. More than fifty per cent of Pakistan’s population now lives in cities. By 2030, the proportion is expected to reach 60%. The largest urban growth is occurring in Pakistan.
Millennium Development Goal 7, which aims to improve access to safe water and sanitation, also aims to improve the lives of 100 million slums residents. The figure appears huge but its only 10 per cent of the Pakistan slum population.
Slums in Pakistan
Access to healthcare
Most of us expect that we will have enough to eat, that services such as water and sanitation will be provided and that if we are sick, help will be available. But health care and support such as hospitals and medicine, or to safe water and hygiene. Access to modern health services is possible for only one in five people in Pakistan.
Millennium Development Goals 4, 5 and 6 target inequalities in health. Goals 4 and 5 aim to reduce two-thirds the number of children who die before their fifth birthday and reduce three-quarters the number of women who die in childbirth. Goal 6 aims to stop, and begin to reverse, the spread of HIV/AIDS and other diseases. Poor sick kids, covered in flies…
Health indicators are used to compare the health of the population in developing countries including Pakistan. The health of Pakistan reflects its level of development. As geographers, it is important to see good health as more than an absence of disease. There is a clear link between where major diseases occur and the region’s level of development. There is also a clear link between development and other health indicators such as the number of hospitals and access to safe water. Links between development and health are obvious in the Human Development Index. All of the countries in the world’s lowest HDIs are located in Pakistan.
Medecins Sans Frontieres as in Doctors Without Borders gives emergency medical assistance and humanitarian support in 78 countries including Pakistan. Often, the doctors work under very difficult conditions. The organisation was one of the first to offer free treatment of diseases to countries trapped in poverty.
Access to education
Without the ability to read, write and calculate, your choice of jobs and access to opportunities in life are limited. Literacy is the ability to read and write. In Pakistan, on average, about 15 per cent of males and 30 per cent of females cannot read or write. Many children leave primary school because they must work so that their family can survive. Pakistan’s Literacy has improved, but some countries and groups are still missing out. Males and people in municipal areas have a better chance of going to school.
According to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, everyone has the right to an education. Improving access to schooling in Pakistan helps the poor to increase their earnings and overcoming gender unfairness. It helps people make informed choices and share in decision-making.
Several factors restrict the life opportunities of girls and women. Many women in Pakistan tolerate a daily struggle to provide food and water for their families. As a result, there is little time or opportunity for women to access education. Traditional customs may discourage girls from going to school or getting a job, and prevent women from owning land or other items such as cattle.
Education in Pakistan
Access to safe and healthy shelter is essential for life. The right to adequate housing is a basic human right outlined in the Declaration of Human Rights. Despite this, it has been estimated that at one million people do not have access to safe and healthy shelter in Pakistan. If appropriate action is not taken, this number will increase. A few villagers moved from their land and put here
In many crowded cities, poorer housing and slums are often found close to large office buildings or luxury hotels. The stark contrast between the rich and the poor can be seen in the types of buildings.
Not all people in Pakistan enjoy human rights. Human rights are a luxury enjoyed by wealthy countries like Australia which have stable governments. In Pakistan, people are suffering due to corrupt governments, wars, discrimination, famine, disease, and poverty.
Every human has rights…
Work & Technology
The growth of technology has changed the nature of work. Machines have become more skilled more sophisticated and workers have become more skilled in the use of computers in the information age. However Pakistan does not have the same access to these new technologies as Australia. Animated laptop
It is estimated that close to a million people either unemployed or under-employed which is approximately 10 per cent of Pakistan. There are differences in the opportunities to undertake paid full-time work between the very rich and the very poor, and for many young people and especially women. In many Pakistani villages, when husbands leave their farms and families to find work in the cities, it is the women who remain behind to carry on with the farming as well as raising the children. Many of them never see any of the money that their husbands earn.
Dispossession of land
There are many groups throughout Pakistan who have been forced to leave their land due to political tensions. In Pakistan farmers have lost their land to a small number of wealthy landowners.
People making concrete with their own hands
Access to and ownership of natural resources
Often the resources of Pakistan are under the control of and used by China (example of a developed country). This is because Pakistan does not have the money, technology and infrastructure to access their own resources. Often the governments of these countries allow large foreign-owned companies and are bribed to extract the resources in order to raise money for development of their own country. However this can often cause environmental damage and impacts negatively on people. Forests and streams turned into factories
Self-Determination is the ability of people to have control of their own lives. Pakistani people are trying to achieve this through self-government. Better education and health are giving many women the opportunity to make decisions about their own lives.
United Nations Millennium Declaration
In 2000, most nations around the world signed the United Nations Millennium Declarations. Governments agreed to take action to lift millions of people out of desperate poverty by 2015. There are eight Millennium Development Goals.
To achieve the goals, poor countries improve the way they govern and take responsibility to help their people achieve the first seven goals. They cannot do this, however, unless rich countries fulfill the responsibilities outlined in the eighth goal. Goal 8 means that rich countries must offer more debt relief to poor countries and increase trade opportunities by reducing trade barriers such as agricultural subsidies.
Millennium Development Goals
1) Eradicate extreme poverty and hunger
Target: Halve the proportion of people who suffer extreme hunger, and the proportion of people living on less than US $1 dollar a day. 2) Achieve universal primary education
Target: All children everywhere are able to finish primary school. 3) Promote gender equality and empower women
Target: Girls and women are able to access the same opportunities as boys and men including secondary and tertiary education, and employment. 4) Reduce child mortality
Target: Reduce two-thirds the number of children who die before their fifth birthday.
5) Improve maternal health
Target: Reduce three-quarters the number of women who die in childbirth. 6) Combat HIV/AIDS, malaria and other diseases
Target: Stop and begin to reverse the spread of HIV/AIDS and other diseases. 7) Ensure environmental sustainability
Target: Halve the number of people who do not have access to safe drinking water and basic cleanliness. By 2020, improve the lives of 100 million people who live in slums. Reverse the loss of environmental resources and improve sustainability. 8) Develop a global partnership for development
Target: All countries work together to develop free trade, help developing countries cope with debt and increase aid to poorest countries.
There have been improvements in the achievement of these goals in Pakistan because of all the charity organisations and non-government organisations that are trying to help improve poverty, hunger, primary education, gender equality child mortality, maternal health, all kinds of diseases, and environmental sustainability in Pakistan.
These goals have improved but haven’t been perfected fully as many organisations are still working on it and I also think that domestic violence should also be given attention to because research shows that it is happening a lot in poor countries especially Pakistan. They say, “We promise these will be perfected by the next 10-15 years in Pakistan”.
Geography for Global Citizens B et al (1999) Macmillan Education Australia PTY LTD
Geography for Global Citizens B et al (2004) Macmillan Education Australia PTY LTD
World Vision: www.worldvision.com.au
International Federation of Red Cross and Red Societies: www.ifrc.org
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