How can poverty be eradicated?
Fight poverty through measures for more equal opportunities
Even in a rich country like Germany and here in Baden-Württemberg, poverty is a reality. There is a lot that people who are poor cannot participate in. Poverty is a lack of participation and realization opportunities.
In order to successfully combat or prevent poverty, it is important to develop tailor-made, non-stigmatizing offers and instruments for the various groups affected.
Strategy "strong children - rich in opportunities"
Almost every fifth child in Baden-Württemberg is at risk of poverty. Children in poverty cannot participate sufficiently in social life. Even at school they often have poorer chances and as adults it is difficult to get out of poverty. This is exactly where the “Strong Children - With Opportunities” strategy of the Ministry of Social Affairs and Integration comes into play. Because all children should have good and equal opportunities - right from the start, but also during the transition from daycare to school or from school to training or studies.
Our goal in 2020 and 2021 is to help ensure that children and their families receive good support offers in all walks of life. There is also a need for financial services that strengthen children and enable them to participate in society - basic child security could bring significant improvements here.
At the online congress "A strong country needs strong children - strategies against child poverty in Baden-Württemberg" in October 2020, Minister of Social Affairs and Integration Lucha reviewed the previous work in the strategy "Strong children - rich in opportunities" and the associated focus year 2020 against child poverty in Baden-Württemberg took stock and made it clear that the state's commitment to combating child poverty will be continued in 2021. The speech is available as a video.
We can only successfully combat child poverty if we work with a large number of actors. On the website www.starkekinder-bw.de the diverse support offers, events on the subject of child poverty and partners are bundled.
Expansion of the prevention networks against child poverty in Baden-Württemberg
The state has little influence on financial transfer payments - it is different with the promotion of a poverty-preventing infrastructure in the municipalities. To this end, the state has been providing funds from the state budget for the establishment and further development of prevention networks against child poverty for almost ten years.
There are currently 16 such prevention networks in 13 of the 44 urban and rural districts in the country. This approach should have been tested in all urban and rural districts by 2030.
As part of the call for funding “Active and together against child poverty and for child health”, prevention networks against child poverty with a focus on health have been funded at six locations since the end of 2018: the Ortenaukreis, the Ravensburg district, the Stuttgart district and the cities of Schorndorf, Singen and Ulm. The call for funding was a direct consequence of the results of the Baden-Württemberg Society Report entitled “Family poverty - a risk to children's health” (issue 3/2018). Because while the majority of adolescents in Baden-Württemberg have good chances of growing up healthy, the almost 20 percent of children and adolescents at risk of poverty in particular have a higher health risk and thus lower chances of a healthy life.
Two further prevention networks started work in December 2019 on the basis of the call for funding “Active and together against child poverty and for the participation and participation of children and adolescents”: in the district of Lörrach and in the city of Mannheim.
As part of the call for funding “Prevention Networks Against Child Poverty - Recognizing and Developing Local Prevention Chains”, another nine projects are being carried out in the districts of Heilbronn and Pforzheim and in the districts of Ravensburg, Karlsruhe (2), Rems-Murr-Kreis, Konstanz, Tübingen and Esslingen (PDF ) funded for a period of two years (December 2020 to November 2022). Here new structures for prevention networks against child poverty are created and further developed. In addition to health or participation, the projects focus on areas of activity such as family education, language and language acquisition, education and transitions, living and social space.
All supported prevention networks against child poverty are supported in their work on behalf of the Ministry of Social Affairs and Integration with regular network meetings and a balance sheet by the family research department in the State Statistical Office.
Support program against child poverty within the framework of the European Social Fund (ESF)
The support program “Strong children - rich in opportunities”, financed by the European Social Fund and state funds, is primarily aimed at pupils from the fifth grade, but also at their parents. The aim is to work out poverty-avoiding perspectives with the participants and thus improve the future prospects of children and young people.
To this end, the projects choose different approaches, including support in the use of public services, psychosocial and health stabilization, but also the use of elements of experiential education.
The two-year funding program with a volume of around 5 million euros, including 2.5 million from the ESF, started with nine projects in January 2020.
Report "Participation Opportunities for Children and Adolescents in Baden-Württemberg"
The approximately 100-page country report on opportunities for participation (PDF) takes into account the conditions for children and young people to grow up well. The focus is on empirical results on various dimensions of the living situation of children and adolescents and the relevant communal options for action. In addition, it includes practical examples and results of various participation processes that accompanied the preparation of the report. Possible corona-related long-term consequences for children and adolescents are also discussed at central points.
The report aims to raise public awareness of the problem of child poverty and is also aimed at professionals, particularly in the fields of education, care and health. It was drawn up by Family Research at the State Statistical Office together with the Ministry of Social Affairs and Integration.
Improvement of the participation chances of children with a migration background and their families
At the end of 2020, ten projects were started that aim to improve the opportunities for children with a migrant background and their families to participate and thus ensure better conditions for children and young people to grow up and continue their lives. This includes offers with low-threshold access and highly participatory elements. Children are picked up with their interests and get to know new possibilities of cultural and educational participation. It is important to involve the parents as well, if one wants to achieve a sustainable effect of the projects.
Some examples of projects:
- Multilingual learning assistants accompany the students with migration or refugee experience directly in the classroom, but also afterwards with homework or open study time.
- Children should learn to use new media creatively and not just to consume. Your parents can take courses to familiarize themselves with computers so that they can support their children and lose their fear of the digital world.
- Young schoolchildren with a migration background should be introduced to vocational training / orientation by tandem leaders of almost the same age (trainees 1st / 2nd year of training).
- Children who have not benefited from attending a day-care center and who still have little knowledge of the German language should be prepared for school at an early stage and encouraged to use the German language.
Overview of funded projects (PDF)
Data basis: Poverty and wealth reports for Baden-Württemberg
In order to be able to develop tailor-made support offers for fighting poverty, a meaningful database is required. This was created for the state with the First Poverty and Wealth Report Baden-Württemberg 2015. The report was drawn up on behalf of the Ministry of Social Affairs by FamilienForschung Baden-Württemberg in the State Statistical Office.
The statistics on the poverty and wealth situation in Baden-Württemberg are regularly updated using a set of basic indicators. The results are published on the Internet platform for Society Monitoring Baden-Württemberg. These basic indicators enable condensed and continuous monitoring of the areas of poverty and wealth in Baden-Württemberg.
The statistical offer is supplemented by an annually recurring presentation of current developments from the basic indicators as well as by practice-oriented social reports on current topics from the area of poverty and wealth such as the health of children or the participation of people at risk of poverty in Baden-Württemberg (see also downloads at the end of the page).
The cooperation with the State Advisory Council on Poverty Reduction and Prevention, which began in the course of preparing the report, will be continued. The advisory board is made up of the associations active in the social sector, the social policy spokespersons of the parliamentary groups and the relevant ministries.
Municipal poverty and social reporting
Local actors, municipalities and their partners play a decisive role in preventing poverty and reducing the consequences of poverty. To support them, the Ministry of Social Affairs and Integration presented the “Practical Guide to Communal Poverty and Social Reporting” in 2018. The guideline sees itself as a handicraft kit with various instruments for municipalities who want to create a poverty or social report or update their reporting.
In addition to the guideline, the state has sponsored participatory workshops on municipal poverty prevention and overcoming poverty by urban and rural districts and municipalities that are preparing or have already submitted a poverty or social report. The participation workshops were held in the districts of Heidenheim, Reutlingen and Zollernalbkreis in the period 2019/2020 and were supported by Family Research Baden-Württemberg in the State Statistical Office. You can find an overview of the results in a short report (PDF).
Better participation of people at risk of poverty in politics and society
Regular social contacts have a positive effect on the political and social participation of people at risk of poverty. This is the result of the second BW Society Report of 2019 “Political and social participation of people at risk of poverty”. Practical examples show the role networking opportunities play in actively contributing to society.
Two calls for funding were developed from the company report: On the basis of the call for funding “Active and together against child poverty and for the participation and participation of children and young people”, two prevention networks against child poverty have started their work (see above). On the basis of the second call for funding, “Opportunities for political and social participation despite the risk of poverty”, eleven projects (PDF) are being carried out in Stuttgart, Mannheim, Göppingen, Rottweil and in the Rhein-Neckar district. These deal with offers from the fields of politics and culture, offer meeting places or promote the formation of networks.
Results of the ideas competition for strategies against poverty
In 2016, an ideas competition “Strategies against Poverty” took place. This was carried out against the background of the recommendations from the First Poverty and Wealth Report. Projects that had been planned for a long time and new approaches to preventing and overcoming poverty, which so far lacked funding, were able to be implemented. The 13 selected projects (PDF) were aimed at children, single parents, the elderly, the long-term unemployed, over-indebted people, migrants and people affected by homelessness.
Family Research Baden-Württemberg at the State Statistical Office balanced the projects and their results in 2018. Because of the thematic context, the documentation was supplemented by two lighthouse projects from Singen and Tübingen, funded by the Ministry of Social Affairs and Integration, in which ways to combat child poverty were systematically pursued.
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