Last Thursday 1000 young Australians gathered on the front lawns of Parliament House to launch the Movement to End Poverty, a new national campaign being spearheaded by the Make Poverty History and Micah Challenge coalitions. One week later, 50,000 Australians have joined them.
Viv Benjamin, 24 year-old CEO of the Oaktree Foundation, said that this astounding support was evidence of the commitment of Australians â€“ young and old â€“ to stand up against extreme poverty.
â€śYoung Ambassadors worked hard last week to get the word out about the Movement to End Poverty as part of our Roadtrip to End Poverty,â€ť Ms Benjamin said, â€śand we are delighted with this early strong response.â€ť
â€śSince 1990 the world has almost halved the number of children dying from preventable causes. By signing the petition, already 50,000 people have reminded our nationâ€™s leaders that they expect Australia to do our fair share to help the poorest people overcome poverty,â€ť she said.
â€śWe are asking our nationâ€™s leaders to stick to their commitments in the coming Federal Budget and beyond, by reaching just 50 cents in every $100 of Australiaâ€™s national income directed to poverty alleviation in 2016 and 70 cents in every $100 by 2020.â€ť
â€śWe know that ending extreme poverty is achievable in our lifetime and that progress thus far has been remarkable,â€ť Ms Benjamin said.
â€śAid is not political, it is about people. We hope that the Movement to End Poverty petition will remind our leaders of this and encourage them to do the right thing by the poorest people in the world.â€ť
â€śThe young Ambassadors who attended the launch in Canberra are now returning to their communities across Australia. And for the next six months, they will continue to join with others in their community that they want Australia to do its fair share.â€ť
â€śWe believe a just and sustainable world is possible,â€ť Ms Benjamin said.
Members of the public can view the campaign website and sign the petition at www.movementtoendpoverty.org.au.
Media Contact: Pauline Richards 0432 521 091
The Movement to End Poverty is a joint action of the Make Poverty History and Micah Challenge Coalitions, for all Australians who believe we can end extreme poverty. For more information, go to www.movementtoendpoverty.org.au.
A range of high resolution images, including those below, are available at: https://www.dropbox.com/sh/4p2cnu2ylqml81s/67ZMZpYUJ7