#YouthStats: Hunger and Poverty

  •  Working poverty affects as many as 169 million youth in the world. The number increases to 286 million if the near poor are included (living below US$4 per day).  
    [ILO, Global Employment Trends for Youth 2015, 2015, p.47, http://goo.gl/NVwFZL]
  • In 2013, more than one-third (37.8 per cent) of employed youth aged 15‒24 in developing regions were poor, with 17.7% of them living in extreme poverty at less than US$1.25 per day.  [ILO, Global Employment Trends for Youth 2015 Scaling up investments in decent jobs for youth, p.47]
  • About 152 million young workers live in households that are below the poverty line ($1.25 per day); they comprise 24% of all working poor. [ILO, Global Jobs Pact − Policy Brief No. 14, 2010, http://bit.ly/1dgT2kF]

[Infographics from UNDP youth strategy 2014-2017, 2014, http://goo.gl/qSVAaE]

  • More than 500 million youth aged 15-24 live on less than $2 a day. [Working Group on Youth, http://bit.ly/1J6e54S]
  • Globally, large numbers of young people are out of school and engaged in child labour.  About one-tenth of the total child population—i.e. 168 million children aged 5-17 years—was involved in child labour in 2012. [SDG Indicator 8.7.1, ILO, Global Child Labour Trends 2008-2012, p.vii, http://goo.gl/rFuAp5]
  • In developing countries, an estimated 2/3 of the youth are not fulfilling their economic potential. [World Economic Forum, 2014]
  • 2 out of 3 countries do not consult young people as a part of the process of preparing poverty reduction strategies or national development plans. [Global Partnership for Youth in the Post 2015 Agenda, 2015, http://bit.ly/1HeSd9S]




  • In 17 conflict affected countries, 9 out of 10 of the poorest young women have not completed primary school. [UNESCO, 2011, http://bit.ly/1Lop5wW]
  • Basic literacy and numeracy skills for young people in low-income countries could lift 171 million people out of poverty, resulting in a 12% cut in global poverty. [Education First, Secretary General’s Initiative, 2012, http://bit.ly/1e48GR3]
  • There are still 781 million adults and 126 million youths who cannot read or write a simple sentence, these numbers weigh heavily on efforts to alleviate poverty. [UNESCO, 2011, http://bit.ly/1Lop5wW]


  • In 21 of 41 countries with data collected in a UNICEF report, more than 1/3 of girls ages 15-19 are anaemic. [UNICEF, 2012, http://uni.cf/1O3yXfe]
  •  Daily school meals provide a strong incentive to send children to school and keep them enrolled. They allow children to focus on their studies rather than their stomachs and help to increase school attendance, decrease drop-out rates, and improve cognitive abilities. [WFP, 2015, http://bit.ly/Qu2uGp]
  • School meals are an investment in a child’s future. In some countries, they are often the only regular and nutritious meals a child receives daily. [WFP, 2015, http://bit.ly/Qu2uGp]

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