The theme for 2012: Ending the Violence of Extreme Poverty: Promoting Empowerment and Building Peace. Visit the UN website for information abut what is being done around the world this day.

“Rampant poverty, which has festered for far too long, is linked to social unrest and threats to peace and security. On this International Day, let us make an investment in our common future by helping to lift people out of poverty so that they, in turn, can help to transform our world.” UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon

The International Day for the Eradication of Poverty has been observed every year since 1993, when the UN General Assembly, by resolution 47/196, designated this day to promote awareness of the need to eradicate poverty and destitution in all countries. Fighting poverty remains at the core of the UN development agenda.

At the Millennium Summit, world leaders committed themselves to cutting in half, by the year 2015, the proportion of people living in extreme poverty, on less than $1.25 a day. Over the last decade, millions have overcome extreme poverty and attained better access to health care and education. Extreme poverty rates have decreased in every region of the world. Over 39 million more children attend primary school. Access to clean water has increased to 89 per cent.

Despite these important gains, several critical gaps remain, thus the 2012 commemoration will focus on the theme “Ending the Violence of Extreme Poverty: Promoting Empowerment and Building Peace” with hope that it will launch a continuing dialogue among people everywhere about this issue.

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