Bundled up against the winter cold, a homeless woman had all her possessions with her. Other New York subway passengers carefully left her alone and she slept undisturbed despite the constant announcements and stop-and-go train movements. Sitting across from her, I reflected on how I take for granted being able to sleep each night in a warm and safe location. I wondered what brought her to these circumstances and where she gets the courage to keep going each day under such challenging conditions.
People like her are the untold story behind the economic and financial crises we at the United Nations work to address. The first of eight UN Millennium Development Goals promises to Eradicate Extreme Poverty and Hunger Worldwide by 2015. This is an admirable objective but it’s not happening quickly enough for my subway companion and countless other women like her across our world. Let‘s continue to work together to make all eight Millennium Development Goals a reality as soon as possible.
Poverty is not an accident. Like slavery and apartheid,
it is human-made and can be removed by the actions of human beings.