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Sing for their supper - 03/08/2009

Music contest encourages young people to raise their voices against poverty.

No one provides more aid to developing countries than the EU – 60% of all global aid in 2008. Yet as recently as 2005 over a billion people worldwide were still living in poverty.

The EU's efforts are aligned with the UN's millennium development goals, one of which is to eradicate extreme poverty, defined as having less than $1.25 per day to live on. Others include providing universal primary education and reducing infant mortality.

The EU scheme “I fight poverty” seeks to involve teenagers in the fight against hardship. The campaign website encourages young Europeans to get involved – for example by using the European voluntary service to find an NGO that needs help. It also explains EU development policy and projects on issues from food security to conflict prevention.

Budding composers or bands can also try their luck in the music against poverty contest. 15-30 year olds can submit a song about fighting poverty, and anyone can vote online for their favourite. The winner will get to record his or her song in a professional studio and perform in Stockholm during the "European development days 2009".

This annual event works to build a global coalition against poverty. Some 4 000 people from 125 countries will discuss the latest issues and initiatives. Organising speakers, events, network meetings and exhibitions is open to all participants, providing plenty of opportunities for sharing ideas and launching partnerships.

Later in the year, the development youth prize will also be awarded for the best video or poster on human development in Africa.

More on EU anti-poverty action

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