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The Harmful Effects Of Poverty On ChildrenPoverty is a very deadly situation that exists in every country and can affect almost anyone. It is among the main social problems affecting humanity worldwide. Many people believe that by moving to a different country, state or city, They are able to escape poverty. Poverty is one of the most devastating yet preventable phenomena working against the wellbeing of children. To prevent or fight poverty, every child should be presented with equal opportunities such as access to a proper learning environment, good food, clean water and a good place to call home.Studies show that there are two ways to categorize poverty in a sociologist viewpoint. Absolute poverty and relative poverty. Absolute poverty refers to the condition in which one is unable to afford the necessities of life, while relative poverty refers to the condition in which one is unable to afford that which is considered a normal standard of living in society.Absolute poverty is far more worse than relative poverty because the victims might be going to bed every night with an empty stomach or they might not even have a roof over their head. Many children find themselves under such terrible states of life, barely surviving with little or no hopes for a better tomorrow. There are many factors that contribute to a high-level of child poverty such as break-ups of families, debt, poor education Many are born into poverty stricken homes and others end up this way either because their parent’s financial state collapsed or were orphaned before they could reach the age whereby they could fend for themselves. The UNICEF defines Child Poverty as an “environment that is damaging to their mental, physical, emotional and spiritual development.” (UNICEF 2012). Things like a high cost of living, low wages, structure of the family etc can also play a role in causing a high level of child poverty.Education is the greatest key to help remove an individual from an impoverished condition. Children living in poverty present a profound challenge to today’s educators and counseling professionals as they are significantly more likely to than children from middle-class backgrounds to report increased levels of anxiety and depression, a greater incidence of behavioral difficulties and a lower level of positive engagement in school. They also experienced a greater incidence of academic failure, delays, development difficulties and a lower level of test scores and graduation rates. Many children in third-world countries often find themselves going to school with an empty stomach and having to spend the rest of the day hungry, making it difficult to cope/concentrate in class. While others don’t even get the opportunity to go to school especially in some third-world countries where education is not free and the government is doing little or nothing to help. some children find themselves having to start their first grade at the age of nine or ten with the help of NGOs but later get discouraged to continue due to the major age difference. Such children usually have a higher rate of absenteeism and  school dropout due to poverty and lack the motivation to continue.     Research shows that poverty has a powerful influence on a child’s grade completed during the rest of their’s school years . children who live in poverty and poor environments are two times as likely to repeat a grade, three to four times as likely to be expelled from school, three to four times as likely to dropout from school at the age of 16-25 with bad grades or none at all, resulting in unemployment or a low paid job, leaving them unable to provide for their families. Child poverty is not just famine or children dying in developing countries as television images would have us believe, it is a big problem in developed countries too (End child poverty,2013).    Children who live in extreme poverty or who live below the poverty line for many years are likely to suffer the worst outcomes. Children who experience poverty during their preschool and early school years have lower rates of school completion than children and adolescents who experience poverty only in later years. Approximately 72 million children of primary school age in the developing world were not in school in 2005, 57% of them were girls. Although more research is needed on the significance of the timing of poverty on child outcomes, findings to date suggest that interventions during early childhood may be most important in reducing poverty’s impact on children(poverty and education, 2011).Chronic stress associated with living in poverty has been shown to adversely affect children’s concentration and memory which may impact their ability to learn and be productive in life. The National Centre for Education Statistics reports that in 2008, the dropout rate of students living in low-income families was about four and one-half times greater than the rate of children from higher-income families (8.7 percent versus 2.0 percent). This on its own is a major cause for alarm. Children are supposed to be the future of the world and if care is not taken and everybody neglects them, then as they grow, more will turn to crime as a way to help themselves. It is important to remember that education is the principle key to eradicate poverty. Education gives both children and adults the knowledge and skills they need to make better choices and to be productive in life.

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