Living on $2 a day for charity’s sake Reply

by Jason Freeman

The inaugural class of Kumbareta High School . Photo: Live Below The Line

Could you survive on $2 a day? Not just food, but all your living expenses, from housing to clothing and transport. Two dollars a day is the extreme poverty line according to the World Bank, and an estimated 1.4 billion people worldwide live on $2 or less a day. That’s about 25 percent of the world’s population, or more than 60 times the population of Australia.

Live Below the Line week, May 7-11, is a fundraising and awareness campaign organised to by the Oaktree Foundation, that challenges people to eat for just $2 a day for five days.

The money raised from the campaign will go towards building schools, and providing teachers and scholarships in two remote communities in Papua New Guinea.

This year the Oaktree Foundation’s aim is to raise $2 million with participants seeking to get through a week on just $2 a day.   “That’s up from $1.4 million in 2011,” says Maddi Connaughton, Media Director for the Oaktree Foundation. “And this year we hope to have 10,000 participants which is up from 6500 in 2011 and 1600 in 2010.”

Ms Connaughton says participants and donors will be given updates, via the Live below the line website, on how the money raised is being spent and where.

Kathryn Adams, a participant in this year’s Live Below the Line, says that while she signed up to raise as much money as possible, she has begun to realise that drawing public attention to its purpose is also a valuable achievement.She is part of a team K-Team with her friend Kristie Watson, and together they hope to raise $800, and increase community awareness.

“I want to be sure that all the people who donated to the campaign did it out of an awareness of the issues, and because they wanted to.” Kathryn said.

To learn more about, or donate to. Live Below the Line, visit www.livebelowtheline.com.

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