poverty

Meet the ‘Infoladies’: the women who get Bangladesh's villages connected


In Bangladesh, dozens of women on wheels are biking into remote villages and hooking poverty-stricken families up to the net. Thanks to ‘Infoladies’, tens of thousands of people are connecting with social media, chatting to loved ones, and getting government services. Read more...
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Luxury hotel offers ‘fake’ shanty town experience

 
Sleeping under a corrugated iron roof, relying on candlelight rather than electricity, cooking on an old gas stove… This is the ‘shanty town’ experience offered by a hotel chain in Bloemfontein, a city in central South Africa. Tourists are encouraged to experience the lifestyle of “millions of South Africans living in precarious housing situations” — but in fake surroundings, not in a real township — for 80 euros a night, no less. Our Observer, who has spent some time living in a real township, found this to be in rather poor taste. Read more...
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Basic services in South African township “were better during apartheid”

 
Protesters have spilled onto the streets of the South African township of Bekkersdal. Police are on high alert, after violent protests erupted on Wednesday and Thursday against the municipality’s inability to deliver basic services. Read more…
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New Hungarian law cracks down on homeless for… being homeless

 
As temperatures begin to drop across Hungary and winter settles in, the country has begun to enforce a recently passed law essentially making chronic homelessness punishable by a fine of 150,000 forint (about $600, or the equivalent of the country’s average monthly salary). Yet as critics of the law point out, some cities such as the capital Budapest don’t have enough space to shelter everyone in need. Read more...
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Censored! There are no poor people in Saudi Arabia

 
Two young Saudi bloggers were sent to jail for fifteen days after uploading a ten-minute documentary on poverty in Riyadh, the capital of one of the richest petro-states in the Gulf. Read more…
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France's Roma face dilemma: Endure the cold or lose their homes

Six months after France stepped up measures to expel Roma gypsies from the country, new makeshift shacks have emerged on the sites of their dismantled camps. Despite the cold, most families living in these slums refuse to go to emergency accommodation centres. They fear their homes will once again be razed while they are away. Read more...

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Escaping poverty by suicide is prevalent in Saudi Arabia

A video has emerged on the Internet that points the finger at a taboo subject in Saudi Arabia: citizens of this rich oil nation killing themselves to escape their miserable existence. Read more and watch the video...

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The shantytown where fridges are recycled into kitchenware

The shantytown of Agbogbloshie, in the suburb of Accra, is used as an international dump for all kinds of electrical equipment. Our Observer followed a group of immigrants from Togo who make their living by recycling old refrigerators. Read more...

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“How I happened to celebrate the end of Ramadan in Cape Town”

Muslims worldwide celebrated the end of the Ramadan period of fasting last Thursday. The Muslim community of Cape Town, South Africa, marked this special evening by distributing hundreds of hot meals to the homeless. Our Observer, a Buddhist, joined them for a memorable night. Read her account...

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Begging or contortion – a sad choice for Congolese children

In the bustling capital of the Democratic Republic of Congo, poor children resort to performing freak shows in order to make money. Read more...

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