The State of Poverty in Somalia

Twenty years of conflict have eroded Somalia’s infrastructure, economy, and institutions, resulting in abysmal poverty. The administration imploded in 1991, leaving the country in shambles. Even with a new administration in place, instability persists in Southern Somalia, leaving the country in a state of poverty, starvation, and periodic bloodshed. Two regions, Somaliland and Puntland, benefit from increased socioeconomic stability as a result of their independent governing bodies. Somalia is one of the world’s poorest countries, ranking fifth among 170 countries on the 2012 Human Development Index. Currently, 73% of people live in poverty. 70% of Somalia’s population is under the age of 30, while the country’s life expectancy is as low as 55%. Youth unemployment is pervasive, with 67% of adolescents unemployed. Development is hampered by the humanitarian crisis in Somalia and a high level of insecurity, which also contributes to the country’s poverty. Over one million refugees reside in the region, the majority of whom live in extreme poverty. Food prices increased by 300 percent, making food inaccessible to the majority of the population. Over two million people have suffered from food insecurity. Malnutrition affects one out of every eight children under the age of five. Children attend school at a rate of 42%. The primary source of revenue is livestock management.

Inaction on the part of the central government is a major source of poverty. Somalia’s divided state makes policy implementation problematic. Additionally, Somaliland announces independence as a country. Somaliland has had the good fortune to enjoy greater stability than the rest of the country. Since 1991, it has even been able to reconstruct a significant portion of its infrastructure. Although internationally recognized as part of Somalia, Somaliland’s leadership has refused to participate in “peace talks aimed at uniting” the country. Somaliland exemplifies how divisions within a country’s administration contribute to the country’s overall poverty. Somalia’s mortality rate is high as a result of this poverty. Around 70% of the Somali population is under the age of 30. The average life expectancy is approximately 57 years. This low life expectancy is a result of a number of poverty-related factors, including inadequate infrastructure, a lack of formal access to healthcare, and sanitation problems. The devastation caused by the civil war has resulted in a country with inadequate infrastructure. Due to the absence of infrastructure, access to power, clean water, and other essential utilities varies by home, with the majority lacking one or more.

Somalis are compelled to pay for everything through barter, employment, or the sale of their possessions. This process has a significant negative impact on their mental and physical wellbeing. Due to Somalis’ lack of health insurance, treating these associated health problems is practically hard, as the majority cannot afford private healthcare. This loop persists and reinforces itself, exacerbating Somalia’s already dire situation. Additionally, there are few work opportunities for young Somalis, as the country has stayed in shambles for the last two decades due to the war. As a result, 67 percent of Somalia’s youth are jobless or unable to meet their basic necessities. As long as the country remains split and people are compelled to use violence to obtain basic necessities such as food and water, Somalia’s poverty problem will persist. Successful nations that understand how to assist must devote additional time and resources to assisting the Somali people. Children Must Be Saved Somalia is a successful non-governmental organization (NGO) dedicated to eradicating child poverty in Somalia through fundraising and direct influence on the children living in this impoverished nation.

The charity offers disadvantaged Somalis with health, nutrition, water, sanitation, hygiene, education, and food security services. Additionally, it communicates with the Somali government in order to develop more effective strategies in these areas. Save the Children has reached 2,814,381 people by the end of 2017, including 1,717,809 Somali children. Different branches of the organization are dedicated to child protection, education, and children’s rights. Somalia has been reduced to a land of poverty and turmoil as a result of war and conflict. Somalia has been attempting to pick up the pieces of a life that previously existed since the Civil War. There is hope that Somalia can transcend poverty and re-establish itself as a powerful nation for its people one day with the assistance of non-profit organizations and efforts.

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