CAREERS MAKING A DIFFERENCE HELPING THOSE IN POVERTY
CAREERS MAKING A DIFFERENCE
HELPING ANIMALS HELPING CHILDREN HELPING SENIORS HELPING THOSE IN POVERTY
HELPING THOSE WITH ADDICTIONS HELPING THOSE WITH DISABILITIES
HELPING THOSE WITH MENTAL ILLNESSES HELPING TO PROTECT THE ENVIRONMENT HELPING VICTIMS
CAREERS MAKING A DIFFERENCE HELPING THOSE IN POVERTY
MASON CREST PHILADELPHIA MIAMI
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ISBN (hardback) 978-1-4222-4261-2 ISBN (series) 978-1-4222-4253-7 ISBN (ebook) 978-1-4222-7547-4 Cataloging-in-Publication Data on file with the Library of Congress
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TA B L E O F CO N T E N T S Chapter 1: Is a Career Helping Those in Poverty for You?.................... 7 . Chapter 2: Helping Those in Poverty: Why It’s Needed..................... 13 Chapter 3: Volunteering and Organizations ..................................... 37 Chapter 4: Education, Training, and Qualifications...........................53 Chapter 5: Salaries, Job Outlook, and Work Satisfaction..................63 Series Glossary of Key Terms .......................................... 74 Organizations to Contact ................................................75 Internet Resources ......................................................... 76 Further Reading ............................................................. 77 Index ..............................................................................78 Author’s Biography, Picture & Video Credits ................... 80 KEY ICONS TO LOOK FOR Words to Understand: These words with their easy-to-understand definitions will increase the reader’s understanding of the text while building vocabulary skills. Sidebars: This boxed material within the main text allows readers to build knowledge, gain insights, explore possibilities, and broaden their perspectives by weaving together additional information to provide realistic and holistic perspectives. Educational Videos: Readers can view videos by scanning our QR codes, providing them with additional educational content to supplement the text. Examples include news coverage, moments in history, speeches, iconic sports moments, and much more!
Text-Dependent Questions: These questions send the reader back to the text for more careful attention to the evidence presented there.
Research Projects: Readers are pointed toward areas of further inquiry connected to each chapter. Suggestions are provided for projects that encourage deeper research and analysis. Series Glossary of Key Terms: This back-of-the-book glossary contains terminology used throughout this series. Words found here increase the reader’s ability to read and comprehend higher-level books and articles in this field.
AWARENESS OF THE CAUSE
Anyone can find themselves in poverty because of their circumstances or their background. In an advanced society such as the United States, it is the responsibility of the nation to provide help and support to those in poverty. Those in poverty need help to attain a reasonable standard of living, education, health care, and the support needed to have a full life. Professionals who make a career in helping the poor make it their responsibility to support those who struggle to make ends meet.
“Americans are blessed with great plenty; we are a generous people and we have a moral obligation to assist those who are suffering from poverty, disease, war, and famine.” – Adam Schiff
“Extreme poverty anywhere is a threat to human security everywhere.” – Kofi Annan
“If a free society cannot help the many who are poor, it cannot save the few who are rich.” – John F. Kennedy
“As long as poverty, injustice, and gross inequality exist in our world, none of us
can truly rest.” – Nelson Mandela
Most people have a worthy cause that they believe in. You can even work in this field yourself by following a career and making a difference to those in need. • Start out as a volunteer. • Seek out a personal connection in the field. • Develop an inspirational mission statement for yourself. • Find out about the education, training, and qualifications required for your chosen career. • Study job specifications of interest. Is a Career Helping Those in Poverty for You?
• Discuss your goals with your loved ones. • Approach school counselors, charities, and organizations to obtain advice.
AWARENESS OF THE CAUSE
POVERTY STATISTICS In the United States today, 39.7 million people are in poverty, slightly lower than in 2016.
POVERTY IN THE UNITED STATES The following U.S. poverty statistics were released in September 2018 by the U.S. Census Bureau. The graph shows the percentages of people living in poverty by group.
The percentage of people in poverty, by group, in the United States.
Adults without a high school diploma 25 %
Adults with a college degree or higher 5 %
Adults not working 31 %
Adults with a disability 25 %
Foreign-born non-citizens 19 %
Single mothers 26 %
Hispanic Americans 18 %
Black Americans 21 %
Full-time working adults 2 %
Single fathers 12 %
All children 18 %
Married couples 5 %
Seniors 9 %
Source: U.S. Census Bureau.
POVERTY Poverty is a state of deprivation, lacking the usual or socially acceptable amount of money or material possessions. The official poverty rate is 12.3 percent, based on the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2017 estimates. According to the Census Bureau, in 2016, 18.5 million people lived in deep poverty. Those in deep poverty represented 5.8 percent of the total population and 45.6 percent of those in poverty. The child poverty rate is 17.5 percent therefore about one in five children is in poverty status. • • •
TOP 12 CAUSES OF GLOBAL POVERTY 1. Inadequate food or water 2. Unemployment 3. Conflict 4. Inequality 5. Lack of education 6. Climate change
7. Lack of infrastructure 8. Inefficient government 9. Lack of resources 10. Natural disaster 11. Disease and disability 12. Overpopulation
• The poverty rate for blacks and Hispanics is more than double that of non-Hispanic whites. • Of those with any disability and between ages 21 and 64, 41 percent are employed, compared with 79 percent of those with no disability. Source: U.S. Census Bureau. DID YOU KNOW? • Of all adults over 25 years old without a high school diploma, 24.5 percent are in poverty. • People with disabilities are more likely to live in poverty than those without disabilities. • Families headed by a single female are more likely to be in poverty than married-couple families.
AWARENESS OF THE CAUSE
Debt Support Organizations
WHERE DO PEOPLE IN POVERTY GET SUPPORT?
WHAT DO PEOPLE IN POVERTY NEED TO HELP THEM IMPROVE THEIR LIVES? • Equality • Individualized support • Good health care • Access to information • Practical help • Education opportunities • Work opportunities • Debt support • Good public services • Financial support
THE BENEFITS OF HELPING OTHERS
A HEALTHY HEART A recent study found that there is a significant correlation between helping others and the heart’s health. It was found that people who volunteer are about 40 percent less likely to develop high blood pressure as compared to those who do not volunteer. REDUCE STRESS T he act of helping others can also help reduce stress. Research shows that people who help others have lower cortisol levels. The presence of this hormone in the body causes it to create feelings of anxiety and panic, which can lead to higher blood pressure levels. People who do less for others have a higher level of the stress hormone in their body. A SENSE OF PURPOSE Giving to others provides a sense of purpose to an individual. People who volunteer for a cause feel that their life is worthwhile and satisfying. This ultimately leads to improved physical and emotional health.
HELPING OTHERS MAKES YOU HAPPY According to research, people who engage in acts of kindness and giving are happier in general as compared to others. Acts of kindness carried out regularly or even once a week can lead to greater happiness and joy in life. EMOTIONAL HEALTH Studies have also shown that the act of charity results in emotional well- being. The person who gives to charity feels improved self-esteem. This gives a feeling of satisfaction to the individual. In a way, giving to others allows the individual to create a “kindness bank account.” The more kind acts are filled in the account, the better the emotional state of the person.
JANE ADDAMS WINS NOBEL PEACE PRIZE
The first woman to be awarded the Nobel Peace Prize, on December 10, 1931, was Jane Addams, a social worker and pioneer in helping people in poverty. She came from a wealthy family but chose to dedicate her life to helping individuals dealing with poverty. During college, she was an excellent student but found herself becoming
Hull-House, Chicago, Illinois.
depressed after graduation because she felt that there were no places for educated women in the United States. She wanted to make a difference in people’s lives, but she wasn’t sure where to begin. After visiting London and witnessing the conditions of the poor in England, she decided to return to her home state of Illinois to open a settlement house in Chicago for poverty-stricken residents. The building she opened was known as Hull-House, and it housed up to 2,000 citizens per week. Hull-House was much more than shelter, though. In the mornings, kindergarten classes were held, and in the afternoons, sports and activities were provided for older children. Over time, Addams added an art gallery, a gym, a swimming pool, a music school, a library, and an employment bureau to her initiative. She gave impoverished people opportunities that they probably never would have had without her help. Throughout her life, she championed many social justice leagues and continued to advocate for those in poverty. Addams set the standard for the level of care that today’s social workers hope to emulate for their clients.
HELPING THOSE IN POVERTY 12
WORDS TO UNDERSTAND
food security: having reliable access to a steady source of nutritious food pro bono: legal work done at no charge for a client with a low income
psychotherapy: the treatment of a mental disorder or illness through personal interaction, rather than with prescription medications only
Helping Those in Poverty: Why It’s Needed WHAT IS POVERTY? According to the 2016 U.S. Census poverty report, over 12 percent of Americans live in poverty. In 2018, the U.S. government defined poverty as a household income of less than $20,780 for a family of three. This means that over 43 million citizens in the United States struggle to meet their basic needs with their income. At this level, most families find it very difficult to provide sufficient food, clothing, and other basic household needs. Many government and nonprofit organizations exist in the United States, all of which have the goal of lowering the number of people who live in poverty. The work is ongoing because there is not a one-size-fits-all solution for those in poverty. Some inhabitants find themselves struggling financially throughout their entire lives; others fall on hard times due to family
HELPING THOSE IN POVERTY: WHY IT’S NEEDED 13
struggles or job loss. Regardless of how people find themselves in poverty, most need some help to find their way out, and this is why supportive, nonjudgmental individuals are necessary to work with those in poverty. You might have a mental picture of what a person in poverty looks like, but it’s important to note that people’s struggles are often not apparent on the surface. A family that lives in a large home could suddenly find themselves falling below the poverty line after company layoffs. A person who drives a fancy car could be mismanaging their money, or dealing with large amounts of debt, and may eventually find themselves living at the poverty line. People whose careers include working with those at the poverty level must have the ability to look at every person as an individual and the ability to withhold judgment on how they may have found themselves in a difficult financial situation. Working with folks living in poverty requires a mind-set focused on solutions, without causing them to feel guilt or shame for how they got themselves into a rough place. AVAILABLE CAREER PATHS A variety of different careers are available in working with people affected by poverty. No matter what your primary area of interest is—direct care, disaster relief, fashion, medicine, and so on—you can channel your passion into a career that helps those who also have financial problems. "The most commonly used way to measure poverty is based on incomes. A person is considered poor if his or her income level falls below some minimum level necessary to meet basic needs. This minimum level is usually called the ‘poverty line.’ What is necessary to satisfy basic needs varies across time and societies. Therefore, poverty lines vary in time and place, and each country uses lines that are appropriate to its level of development, societal norms, and values." —The World Bank Organization (www.bbc.co.uk). DEFINING POVERTY
HELPING THOSE IN POVERTY
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