EFFORTS BY STEVE DOWN TO COMBAT ECONOMIC INEQUALITY
ECONOMIC INEQUALITY AND SUSTAINABLE
The UN identifies eradicating poverty and hunger, access to quality education, gender equality, health, and well-being as the leading goals for sustainable development worldwide. Even though the UN and other agencies have allocated significant resources to pursue these primary aims, economic inequality remains a challenging bottleneck.
According to a study sponsored by Steve Down, the causes of economic inequality vary depending on the geographical location, socio-political systems, and cultural and historical influences.
While trying to identify societal causes for income inequality, the study identified that variation in individuals’ access to education is key to income inequality. Economic sectors with a high demand for workers create high wages for those with this education. Where opportunities to acquire education and skills are unequal, the philanthropist noted, those ahead of the curve continue advancing economically and professionally while the disadvantaged workers stagnate or retrogress economically.
The study observed that whereas Globalization has reduced global inequality between nations, it has increased inequality within nations by exerting downward pressure on wages due to competition from low-wage countries. The global nature of trade and industry, according to Steve Down’s report, means that corporations can sidestep taxes on their capital, which in the long run contributes to an increase in inequality.
The entrepreneur turned giver notes the urgency for measures to instigate financial freedom, wealth creation, and economic empowerment, especially for communities in low-income countries.
Oxfam asserts that worsening inequality is impeding the fight against global poverty. A 2013 report from the group stated that the $240 billion added to the fortunes of the world’s highest ranking billionaires in 2012 was enough to end extreme poverty four times over. Oxfam Executive Director Jeremy Hobbs said, “We can no longer pretend that the creation of wealth for a few will inevitably benefit the many – too often, the reverse is true.”
It is for the above reasons that The Goat Foundation was founded. his foundation interacts with widows from impoverished communities across Kenya regularly. From his observations, it is apparent to Mr. Down that deep economic disparities exist among members of Kenyan society.
He speaks of how economic inequality has led to a higher rate of health and social problems such as obesity, mental illness, homicides, teenage births, incarceration, child conflict, and drug use.
His experience indicates that reduced life expectancy, poor educational standards and performance, degraded women’s status, and non-existent social mobility are ubiquitous in unequal societies.
At The Goat Foundation, Steve Down concluded that outcomes of economic disempowerment often lead to the loss of human rights, particularly for widows. For this reason, his efforts have focused on providing solutions that will guarantee the financial well-being of Kenyan widows.
The Cause founder is alive to the fact that historically, women faced social and economic disadvantages in African societies. The foundation’s efforts are guided by the understanding of the increased threat when women become widowed, especially, as commonly observed, while they are still relatively young.
Steve Down knows that eradicating poverty in all its forms and dimensions is an indispensable requirement for sustainable development. To this end, he is ready to partner with individuals and affiliate civic bodies to promote sustainable, inclusive, and equitable economic growth.
Mr. Down drafted the goals of his foundation to focus on creating economic opportunities for widows, reducing the gender-based inequalities they face, and eventually raising the basic living standards of all widows in Kenya and Africa.
His activities foster equitable social development and inclusion for widows in impoverished communities. Mr. Down also promotes the integrated and sustainable management of natural resources and ecosystems.
Meanwhile, according to the acclaimed author of The Wealth Compass, policymakers must control structural inequality because it reduces a country’s capacity for economic development. At the same time, he urges governments to maintain the incentives necessary for economic growth. They must provide affordable education and health services, enforce human rights laws and incorporate wealth redistribution mechanisms.
Steve Down and The Goat Foundation understand the limitless potential for improving the lives of widows by finding and facilitating sustainable economic solutions. He invites partners and well-wishers to join him in this endeavor.
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