“If you don’t reach out, nobody will know you’re there. You have to reach out, and then after a while people expect you to be there… You’ll never know who is the most isolated or the most in need if you don’t go searching.” – Emma Speaks, ATD Fourth World Activist, New York City
ATD Fourth World’s global Stop Poverty campaign began on February 8th with an event at the United Nations entitled “Leave No One Behind: The Wresinski Approach, 60 Years of Experience.”
The notion of leaving no one behind is essential to the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goal of eradicating poverty “in all its forms” by 2030. And yet, how does an organization make sure that its projects are reaching those who are most difficult to reach, those whom most programs miss? Joseph Wresinski’s life, and ATD Fourth World’s experience working alongside the most excluded families for more than 60 years, offer an important example.
“In order to transform our world,” Geneviève Tardieu, Director of International Policy and Advocacy for ATD Fourth World said, “we must accept a drastic change of perspective and, from the beginning of any undertaking, include input from people who live in poverty.”
This is just what Emma Speaks found so striking during her several decades of involvement in ATD’s work, first as the parent of children in street library and today as a member of ATD Fourth World’s board of directors.
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