Long-term care for people with chronic illnesses and disabilities presents an urgent challenge around the world. The burden placed on unpaid family carers is immense and has a direct impact on their physical health, mental and emotional wellbeing and economic security. As a result many carers decline in to poverty and sadly are unsupported in their caring roles.
Twenty-five years ago this month, the world commemorated the first International Day for the Eradication of Poverty. Since then, nearly 1 billion people have escaped poverty, thanks to political leadership, inclusive economic development and international cooperation.
However, many are still being left behind. Over 700 million people are unable to meet their basic daily needs. Our research shows, that this includes unpaid family carers and their families – with 93% of carers that we engage in our programmes living below the poverty line.
Facing barriers in accessing health care, education and job opportunities; they are prevented from benefitting from engaging with the mainstream and participating in broader economic development. And women are disproportionately affected.
Since 2012 we have been intensifying our efforts towards eradicating the extreme poverty and discrimination that they face, working towards opportunities which allow them to fully exercise their human rights. Our participatory development approach enables the full engagement of carers and their families in the decisions that affect their lives and communities, and together with local communities we advocate for their inclusion in mainstream development programmes and the development of carer-specific services.
You can find out more about our work to help carers and their families to overcome poverty in our 2018 Impact Report