Breaking the cycle


A DANDENONG women’s group says governments need to address education gaps to break the poverty cycle.
Dandenong Evening Voice, Interests and Education of Women (VIEW) Club raised the issue in the lead-up to Anti-Poverty Week (12-18 October).
VIEW fund-raises and volunteers for The Smith Family to help vulnerable young Australians to succeed in their education.
Dandenong Evening VIEW secretary Gunta Delvers said it was hard for kids to concentrate on schoolwork when they were hungry or battling a health problem.
She called on state and federal governments to address the gap in educational performance between disadvantaged and advantaged young Australians.
“Financial vulnerability also means children don’t have access to important learning resources such as books or a home computer, or the pursuits that are at the heart of receiving a comprehensive education, such as school camps, hobbies and sport,” she said.
“As they reach their teens, children in disadvantaged communities often lack positive role models and the networks so crucial in creating a pathway to future study or a job.”
Ms Delvers said that if a young person left school with an inadequate education it was likely their cycle of disadvantage would continue.
“That’s not only bad for them but for the entire community,” she said.
“Anti-Poverty Week is an opportune time for VIEW to contribute its voice to tackling disadvantage in Australia – to help change perceptions and raise awareness of this critical issue, in the Dandenong region and across the country.”
Anti-Poverty Week aims to strengthen public understanding of poverty and encourage discussion and action aimed at addressing the problem.