Book proposes sustainable communities to reduce poverty in Latin America

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Latin America could reduce extreme poverty through “sustainable communities for families” built, developed and managed by those who will live and work there, says a free book in English and Spanish.

The book, “What Poverty Taught Me,” is based on the professional experience of its author, Robert (Bob) Miller, as an international consultant (he came to work in 21 countries), in his personal experience of having adopted two children Mexicans (now adults) and two decades of research in Mexico, the United States and Vietnam.

Miller, a resident of Evergreen, Colo., Says that “sustainable communities for families” can serve as a basis for “a system that replaces prosperity with prosperity,” because “business profits from those communities will be reinvested in infrastructure improvements And services in those communities and in the opening of new sustainable communities. ”

According to World Bank statistics for June 2016, extreme child poverty in Latin America reaches 18% (it was 33% in 2014), although that figure varies from country to country and starts from 11% in Chile to 70% % in Guatemala.
In addition, poverty affects one in three residents in that region, regardless of age.

However, according to Miller, “the problem itself is not poverty, but the fact that those living in poverty can not conceive of their connection to a life without poverty.”

“They want to get out of poverty, but how do they do it? Or how can they do so now? Through a sustainable community that they build themselves,” Miller told Efe.

The model grew out of long consultations with the School of Architecture at the University of Colorado, whose students created the design of the communities at no cost, and the Rotary International Club, as well as a team of about 800 volunteers, business leaders, Diplomats and experts on social issues, from Mexico and the United States.

Miller emphasized the urgency of implementing this or similar model “because we have already seen the effects of poverty, homelessness, drugs and crimes in our countries.”

The combination of microenterprises focused on food production, educational opportunities, counseling and cultural contextualization of each community will ensure the stability of communities, without destabilizing other communities or generating poverty elsewhere, explains the consultant in his book.

Miller, who said he does not accept compensation for his work or solicit donations from charitable organizations or government grants, described his work as “a vision for the future, a model of the future, an island of prosperity, a way out of the poverty”.

His reward, he added, will come in the near future “when thousands of children in communities without poverty call me ‘grandfather.”
“We are not fighting poverty, we are building prosperity through communities that are immune to poverty,” he concluded.

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