7 August 2019
The Department of Development Studies, Undergraduate final year students raised £412.50 for the Camden Foodbank this summer, an organisation that provides much needed emergency food stores to local people in crisis.
Many think of Development Studies as the study of poverty, inequality and vulnerability in parts of the world other than Europe and North America. But, as our students have been learning, these experiences are global. Indeed, research shows that the majority of those living in extreme poverty live in middle-income countries; and poverty in countries like the UK is real, significant and persistent. Data from the Social Metrics Commission found 4 million people in the UK living in deep poverty; and a further 7 million affected by persistent poverty. Last year, the Trussell Trust food bank network (which includes the Camden Foodbank) alone distributed 1.6 million three-day emergency food supplies to people in crisis; and over 4 million adults are forced to use food banks each year as a result of deprivation and crisis.
"We are enormously proud of our students, not only for raising money and awareness about the problems affecting large numbers of people who live in the SOAS neighbourhood, but for the many other ways in which our students seek to effect change. Alongside their studies into the challenges, opportunities and possibilities in development and in tackling poverty, inequality and vulnerability they also engage in practical efforts and initiatives at the local and the global level. By supporting local social change, they are putting into practice the values of SOAS and development studies, and showing why our alumni can be found across the world, working with and supporting others to make meaningful and sustainable change for us all", Dr Michael Jennings, Head of Department, Development Studies.