Why we focus on

the ultrapoor

our partners
are changing
lives

Who are the ultra-poor?

The ultra-poor, an estimated 395 million people - are the most economically, financially, and socially marginalized in their communities. Living without reliable shelter or income these households, the majority of which are female-headed, often lack access to food, water, sanitation, healthcare, and education. Living in the direst form of poverty, these women are often hard to identify and find. Invisible and isolated, these mothers and children are being left out of existing programs designed to end poverty.

Learn how our partners are changing lives

  • SOCIAL ISOLATION

    The ultra-poor often suffer from additional vulnerabilities and are extremely socially isolated. They are excluded from poverty eradication efforts such as government social protection, microfinance, and cash transfer programs.

  • FOOD SCARCITY

    Ultra-poor households often exist on the margins of subsistence, eating once every three days. This hunger and malnutrition leads to stunting and wasting in children and low physical and mental energy for all members of the household.

  • A MULTI-GENERATIONAL CYCLE

    Ultra-poverty is a vicious cycle. Poor maternal health and gender discrimination often leaves ultra-poor mothers trapped in a cycle that results in a large number of children but without the ability to properly support them.

  • HARSH LIVING ENVIRONMENTS

    Many of the ultra-poor live in arid or climate-affected lands which are harsh and unforgiving, making it difficult to break the cycle of poverty.

  • HAZARDOUS LIVING & WORKING CONDITIONS

    With unpredictable sources of income that usually coming from demanding physical day labor that is not guaranteed, ultra-poor families often live in environments that are not healthy and safe.

  • LACK OF ACCESS TO CLEAN WATER & SANITATION

    With little access to clean water and sanitation ultra-poor children’s health suffer greatly. Children are also often forced to help support the family by spending long hours working or fetching water - leaving them no time to attend school.

We must put these
women first

Historically, ultra-poor households, have been so marginalized that they are not being reached by traditional government social protection, microfinance, and cash transfer programs. We are here to change that. We’ve arrived at a precise moment in time where we have the ability to rewrite history and ensure these women get the support that they need.

We know what works

BRAC, an Uplift partner, pioneered a scientifically-vetted time-bound method in Bangladesh that sustainably lifts families out of ultra-poverty. Known as Graduation, the approach has been scientifically tested over the past decade and has been implemented and adapted in numerous countries. Graduation programs consistently achieved a 90% success rate, with families continuing to prosper years after they complete the program.

Holistic
approach

The impact of a holistic approach

An Evidence Backed Holistic Approach

Identifying and targeting the poorest families in a community, approaches like Graduation provide immediate consumption support along with assets and coaching over a time-bound period that empowers families to transform their own lives. Through these holistic interventions including life-skills coaching, financial literacy, and access to productive assets (such as livestock, sewing machines, cash, or other sources of enterprise), participants gain the economic, social, and personal foundation to lift themselves and their families sustainably out of ultra-poverty.

  • PARTNER - TRICKLE UP

    Access to a proper diet and the ability to eat three meals a day helps participants to become stronger and their children to develop properly.

  • PARTNER - FONKOZE

    Social inclusion and a sustainable enterprise allow this micro-entrepreneur to be a contributing and productive member of her community.

  • PARTNER - BRAC

    This widowed mother was living on the margins of her community and fighting to raise five children on her own. Today, she finds joy and dignity in her work and the skills she has learned.

  • PARTNER - BRAC

    Building a shop of her own and working to save adequate amounts each season has allowed this business owner to successfully grow her business.

  • PARTNER - FUNDACIÓN CAPITAL

    With coaching this farmer learned the valuable skills needed to properly tend to his crops and support himself.

Building a hopeful and prosperous future

Sustained support and livelihoods development is the key to lifting the floor on poverty forever, bringing hope to generations, and unlocking vast human potential. With reliable income and the training needed to properly manage their finances, families can afford to feed their children and send them to school. Sustained coaching and business advice ensures that families gain the skills needed to escape ultra-poverty forever. Graduation was the first poverty eradication approach providen to effectively transition the ultra-poor into sustainable livelihoods.

  • PARTNER - TRICKLE UP

    Access to a proper diet and the ability to eat three meals a day helps participants to become stronger and their children to develop properly.

  • PARTNER - FONKOZE

    Social inclusion and a sustainable enterprise allow this micro-entrepreneur to be a contributing and productive member of her community.

  • PARTNER - BRAC

    This widowed mother was living on the margins of her community and fighting to raise five children on her own. Today, she finds joy and dignity in her work and the skills she has learned.

  • PARTNER - BRAC

    Building a shop of her own and working to save adequate amounts each season has allowed this business owner to successfully grow her business.

  • PARTNER - FUNDACIÓN CAPITAL

    With coaching this farmer learned the valuable skills needed to properly tend to his crops and support himself.

In the news

A scientifically proven pathway out of ultra-poverty

Today, Uplift partners are adapting and scaling BRAC’s innovative model across 23+ countries and advancing innovations that can make it even more efficient and effective. Uplift advances a systemic approach to scaling and innovating evidence-based methods like Graduation, working across sectors to build the ecosystem necessary to end ultra-poverty and transform a global system that has historically left the most vulnerable families behind.

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