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LN – Invisible Networks Who are you helping to get out of poverty?


The most mentioned words in relation to poor people were fear, hunger, villa and guilt

No matter who you are or what your social condition is, poverty generates many mixed feelings. When one comes into contact with the exclusion, marginality and urgency of a single person, it can not remain indifferent. Something changes, questions arise, and in some cases, the need to act.

In the focus groups that we made for the project
Invisible Networks, the most mentioned words in relation to poor people were fear, hunger, villa and guilt. Fear of what is different, fear of what we do not understand, fear of falling into poverty, fear of not knowing how to approach someone with a reality different from ours. But also guilt for feeling privileged to have more comfort than others, guilt “because we were lucky to be born in another place” or guilt for not doing enough to help others.

This mixture of sensations that arise from social inequality is also reflected in the survey that the Voices! performed in 2019 at the national level. There the most relevant were sadness (40%), worry (38%), the desire to do something (28%) and impotence (27%).

Beyond the strong prejudices that exist in relation to the poor, it is also true that there are many people genuinely concerned about the current situation and eager to commit themselves. The challenge is to take the time to ask ourselves what is the best way to help the most vulnerable families.

A poor person does not lack only money. She also needs a decent home, asphalt streets, access to services, having a school nearby and references that help her to get ahead. That is why donating money is not enough to break the cycle of poverty.

A poor person does not lack only money. She also needs a decent home, asphalt streets, access to services, having a school nearby and references that help her to get ahead. That is why donating money is not enough to break the cycle of poverty.

Many times small gestures are what make the difference. Even those we do without realizing the impact they can have on the lives of others. A council said in passing, exercise with passion the profession without knowing that it can inspire others, listen to them, get interested in their reality, try to understand, embrace, give them hope.

All these daily actions can open a new world of possibilities for others who do not have support networks or references that show them different ways. That a low-income young man has someone to accompany him to enroll in college, to ask him how to promote a subject, how to make a CV or how to dress for his first job interview, can be essential for future possibilities .

The economic can be a complement but not the fundamental to generate a qualitative leap in the lives of people. To contribute for a scholarship so that a boy can finish high school, to volunteer in an NGO or to donate an element that another is needed to carry out a micro-enterprise, has to be part of a deeper combo.

Another enormous capital that we can make available to people from the most vulnerable contexts is our “contact agenda”. What for us is a telephone call away, for them it can be an impossible procedure that leaves them without medical coverage, a social plan, a blank job or a decent home.

We can all be part of different Invisible Networks that today are changing someone's life. You just have to be attentive, broaden your eyes, make time to chat with people who are having a worse time, ask them what they need and start being part of solving their problems.

Give an employee the time to train or finish their studies, bring a person to work if they do not have mobility, offer themselves as a tutor so that a low income kid can enter the university, give workshops of trades in towns or settlements so that young people can have a job. It all adds up.

It is a matter of breaking prejudices, lowering barriers and approaching from a human place in which we all win. Because they also have a lot to share, to teach, to contribute in their passage through our life. Listening, empathy, humility, patience and perseverance have to be tested.

You, who are you helping at this moment, for whom were you fundamental in your future opportunities? What did you learn while helping another? I shared what your Invisible Networks are and the different ways you know about fighting against poverty. Send us an email to
[email protected] Your experience can inspire others to join.

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Publicado en el diario La Nación

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