Some seven million children aged under 14 live submerged in poverty with at least one of their fundamental rights infringed, including food, health, education and decent housing, among others, a new report has warned.
According to a report by the NGO Haciendo Camino, based on data from the INDEC national statistics bureau published in the second half of last year, 40 percent of children in Argentina suffer from malnutrition, while 54 percent live in overcrowded conditions.
Underlining the challenges facing those that live in low-income households, the study found that 43 percent of homes have no drinking water, 67 percent of homes are built with precarious materials, 32 percent of homes have no means of preserving food, 62 percent of families lack regular medical controls, and 29 percent are precariously fed.
“Behind these findings are invisible realities which do not go viral but which must be changed," said the NGO’s president and founder Catalina Hornos.
"Santiago del Estero and Chaco are the provinces with the worst child poverty in the country," she added, warning that "the health system presents serious deficiencies," thus multiplying the problems of access to basic healthcare.
In that sense she underlined: "Both provinces have urgent needs which unfortunately do not take priority so that the families we accompany continue living in a structural poverty from which it is very difficult to emerge."
Hornos explains that every member of Haciendo Camino personally accompanies a family with the risk factors of each child identified, as are the resources of the family which can be mobilised to reach the NGO’s aims.
"The integral approach of our programmes orients the planning of the interventions to jointly create effective solutions responding to the basic problems of the families regarding social vulnerability," Hornos rounds out.
Argentina’s economic crisis means that ever more malnourished children need to go to one of the 12 centres in Añatuya, Colonia Dora, Herrera, Los Juríes, Monte Quemado, Pampa de los Guanacos, Taco Pozo, Santa Rosa, Santiago del Estero (Capital), Sumampa, Suncho Corral and La Banda, which on average attend to 1,000 children under five who go there every week with their mothers.
Hornos warns: "Our funds are not sufficient to cover their treatment and recovery," adding: "We need people to sponsor [these children] and commit themselves monthly to helping us to change their reality," thus assuring malnourished children at social risk in the provinces of Santiago del Estero and Chaco the nutritional treatment which they need.
Under the heading “Esta Argentina no se viraliza” (“This Argentina does not go viral”), the NGO’s campaign is seeking to find over 2,000 people willing to sponsor a child by the end of this month, flagging the idea of making this reality visible in the social networks.