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Global poverty causes a great amount of suffering, and the scales involved can be astonishing. More than 6 million children die each year from preventable diseases, and over 1 billion people lack access to clean drinking water. Nonetheless, global poverty is not an insurmountable problem. In light of the many charities working to effectively implement change, the wealth of the developed world provides us with a real opportunity to make a big difference.
You might think that we as individuals can do very little, but this is simply not the case. Each of us has the potential to help hundreds of people by donating to the right charities. If the average American citizen decided to donate 10% of their income to a cost-effective charity, they could treat 7,100 people for neglected tropical diseases per year.1
You might worry that giving substantial amounts to charity will negatively impact the quality your own life. However, even if you gave away 10% of your income, you would most likely still be in richest 5% of the world’s population (see our How Rich You Are calculator). Research by economists and psychologists suggests that the relationship between income and happiness is not as strong as you would expect. Giving may actually improve your level of happiness.
You might be skeptical about the efficacy of foreign aid. We hope that our page on Myths About Aid will answer your concerns.
Finally, you might wonder why you should take a pledge to give and join us as a member of Giving What We Can. There are many compelling reasons to get on board. You can find out more below.
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