Last updated: 18 november, 2009 - 10:37 GMT


A Dollar a Day

Maize in a basket

Maize: the poor crop is due to drought

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What keeps a billion people trapped in the most persistent poverty? Mike Wooldridge travels to Nicaragua, Namibia and Nepal where the poor describe a daily struggle that has been worsened by the global economic crisis.


In Nepal, severe drought and unreliable monsoon rains have led to acute food shortages and the highest levels of hunger in 40 years.

Experts warn that the country’s efforts to reduce poverty after the decade-long civil war are being undermined by the country’s continuing political instability, climate change and a deepening food crisis.

The impact is felt most by people like Charuri who was abandoned by her husband ten years ago. She’s struggling to feed three children, she is sick, unable to work and she cannot afford the medical help she needs.

It is the same story for Putali, a landless widow. She can not manage on the little she gets from working for others, and has had to send her 12 year old daughter into town to do domestic work because she can no longer afford to feed her.

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  • Justa survives on meagre remittences

  • Everyone in Otjivero is given a grant of US$10 a month

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