Augustinians Mark International Day for the Eradication of Poverty

Building a sustainable future: Coming together to end poverty and discrimination

The United Nations has declared October 17 as "International Day for the Eradication of Poverty."  Ban Ki Moon, the UN's Secretary-General, has said,  "On this day we recommit to think, decide and act together against extreme poverty -- and plan for a world where no-one is left behind. Our aim must be prosperity for all, not just a few."

The Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) are the eight international development goals of the United Nations passed in 2000. All 189 member states at the time committed to help achieve the goals by 2015. They covered poverty, education, gender equality, child mortality, maternal health, HIV/AIDS, and the environment. These expire at the end of 2015.

Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs): these goals incorporate the notion of "sustainability" and continue from 2015 to 2030. The terms "Post 2015 Development Agenda" and the report entitled "Transforming our world: the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development" are commonly used.There are 17 goals and 169 targets.

SDG #1:  End Poverty in All its Forms Everywhere

  • Target #1:  By 2030, eradicate extreme poverty for all people everywhere, currently measured as people living on less than $1.25 a day.

  • Target #2:  By 2030, reduce at least by half the proportion of men, women, and children, all ages living in poverty in all its dimensions according to national definitions.

National Definition for the United States:

The Census Bureau uses a set of money income thresholds that vary by family size and composition to determine who is in poverty.  If a family's total income is less than the family's threshold, then that family and every individual in it is considered in poverty.  The official poverty thresholds do not vary geographically, but they are updated for inflation using Consumer Price Index.  The official poverty definition uses money incomes before taxes and does not include capital gains or non cash benefits (such as public housing, Medicaid, and food stamps).

The nation's official poverty rate in 2014 was 14.8%, which means there were 46.7 million people in poverty.  Neither the poverty rate nor the number of people in poverty were statistically different from 2013 estimates.  This marks the fourth consecutive year in which the number of people in poverty was not statistically different from the previous year's estimate.

What does love look like? It has the hands to help others. It has the feet to hasten to the poor and needy. It has eyes to see misery and want. It has the ears to hear the sighs and sorrows of men. That is what love looks like.
— St. Augustine

Please remember the poor and extend a helping hand.  Give of both your prayers and your treasures.  You, too, can be a part of the solution that ends extreme poverty by 2030.  


Patrick Murphy

Patrick Murphy has been working with the Augustinians in fundraising and communications since 2010. He began working with the Augustinian Vocations office in 2015. He also holds a Master of Science in Nonprofit Management.