16.10.2013 - UNESCO Office in Brasilia

International Day for the Eradication of Poverty - 17 October

Message from the Director-General of UNESCO, Irina Bokova, on the occasion of the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty, 17 October

The eradication of poverty must be the absolute priority of any development policy. Extreme poverty is an impediment to the full exercise of human rights, an obstacle to development and a threat to peace.

Millions of people are still victims of famine – 842 million people continued to suffer from chronic hunger between 2011 and 2013. How can we imagine that lasting peace and sustainable development may be built in these conditions? This is an insult to society and the notion of human dignity and it requires our full attention.

A leap forward is possible, solutions do exist – starting with education, which opens the door to social inclusion, skills and employment. Education is the most important foundation to build equal societies, especially for women. Education empowers and it improves crop yields, health and children’s lives.

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