Most people are now aware of worldwide fundraising campaign Live Below the Line, I was first introduced to the concept a few years ago when my cousin Bek, was participating. The concept is simple, you spend £5 on a weeks shopping! and stick to that shopping for the week, living below the poverty line for 5 days. The campaign creates lots of awareness and puts comments from Conservative politicians that its easy to live on £1 per day to shame. Overall I think the Live below the line campaign is a positive thing, with a positive message behind it. My friend Molly who I met at my seasonal job even used a similar set up to fund her volunteer placement abroad (She did it in the winter not through the charities site) Although it can be easy to make a weeks food on £5 especially when on a plant based diet, it could mean going without your morning Starbucks, deli counter lunch, exotic fruit smoothies or cheeky artisan bakery snacks. And for people who don’t do that kind of ‘cosmopolitan’ thing, it would mean no ice cream from the ice cream man! (you would only have 1p left for the day! and thats if he charged the traditional 99p) and no Bacon sandwiches from the local greasy spoon or pound bakery sausage rolls! I can not think of anyone who is not living in poverty who doesn’t spend much more than £5 on food during the week! So those people saying the challenge is simple need to have a long hard think about what they take for granted.
My reason for writing this post is to ask anyone who does not know anybody personally who is participating to spare some cash and sponsor my friend Pamela. Pam is a bit of a foodie and this is her 2nd Live below the line challenge so please do donate! https://www.livebelowtheline.com/me/vegankitten money raised goes to Unicef raising funds for children in poverty in over 190 countries!
After a sentence of 5 more years under Tory rule, the level of poverty in the UK has a bleak future. With the bedroom tax and lack of fixed hour contract jobs, homeless-ness is not going anywhere so I also urge you to look into supporting projects helping homeless people in your local area, volunteers are always needed and if you are short on time then donations are good too. Suspended coffees is a project which I support (the one where you buy an extra drink to be ‘on hold’ for a homeless person to claim) and there is bound to be somewhere local to you supporting the scheme so remember that even £2.50 could warm someone up one evening.
Another thing to consider is the impact your diet has on global starvation please read the following if this interests you- http://gentleworld.org/could-veganism-end-world-hunger/
You can read Pamela’s charity blog here http://project52ayear.blogspot.co.uk/
Thanks for reading! -India