CARE fights poverty and injustice in 86 countries around the world to help the world’s poorest people find routes out of poverty. CARE also delivers emergency aid to survivors of war and natural disasters, and helps people rebuild their lives in the aftermath.
CARE’s mission is to create lasting change in poor communities and put money where it is needed most:
94 pence in every pound goes towards our poverty fighting programmes - that’s one of the highest rates among all the UK aid agencies.
CARE and women
CARE tackles the underlying causes of poverty so that people can become self-sufficient. Recognising that women and girls suffer disproportionately from poverty, CARE places special emphasis on working with women to create permanent social change. Women are at the heart of CARE's community-based efforts to improve basic education, increase access to quality healthcare and expand economic opportunity for all.
CARE International is non-religious and non-political, allowing us to deliver humanitarian and development assistance to anyone in need regardless of race, gender, ethnicity, age, religion, political view or sexual orientation.
With more than 60 years’ practical and hands-on experience, our programmes tackle the deep-seated root causes of poverty, not just the consequences.
More than 90 per cent of our 13,000-plus staff are locally-hired, and we increasingly look to work alongside local organisations.
CARE International UK is part of the global CARE International confederation of 12 member organisations which has its secretariat in Geneva.
We receive funding from a variety of different sources, including grant-giving trusts, such as the Big Lottery Fund, the corporate sector and governments and institutions, including the United Nations, the World Bank, the European Commission and the British Government.
The UK Government’s Department for International Development (DFID) is CARE International UK’s largest single donor, funding major projects such as food distribution in Darfur, as well as research into good development practice.
A voluntary Board of Trustees governs CARE International UK under the leadership of our chairman, Richard Greenhalgh.
Geoffrey Dennis, CARE International UK’s chief executive, oversees its strategy and daily operations together with the senior management team.
CARE's vision for a world without poverty requires us to address the underlying causes of poverty, rather than to simply focus on its symptoms.
Poverty is the product of complex social processes that affect people’s dignity and security as well as their material well-being.
CARE seeks to understand all the factors that make people poor before choosing which ones to concentrate on in each individual project.
A mother in Malawi, for example, who struggles to grow enough food for her family year after year could be struggling because drought or another natural disaster continually causes her crops to fail.
But there may be other reasons for her poverty. She might not have the skills to get the highest yield from her crops, for instance.
And, on top of that, she might be marginalised by people in her community – maybe because she has been diagnosed with HIV or is caring for a sick family member – and as a result faces a number of difficulties.
The reasons why people around the world are poor – and cannot break out of a cycle of poverty – are many.
Causes of poverty
To make sense of all this, CARE finds it useful to describe our work under three categories, examining the causes of poverty from three different perspectives:
- First, from the perspective of people’s basic needs
- Then from their position in society
- And last from the way the society in which they live works
Effects of poverty
And we address the effects of poverty from these three different points of view.
- Human conditions: we ensure that people’s basic needs – such as the need for food and clean water – are met, and that future generations have these needs met as well
- Social positions: we help people to take control of their lives, end inequality and discrimination and fulfil their rights, responsibilities and aspirations
- Enabling environment: we focus on creating sound and equitable government, private sector and thriving civil society to establish a climate that promotes equity, justice and secure livelihoods for all
These three perspectives bring together the breadth of CARE’s work – from helping poor people find work which gives them a steady income, to teaching them about how to realise their rights, to lobbying for governments to be fair.
By addressing the underlying causes of poverty, CARE is developing sustainable solutions for the future.
How we approach this work is also enshrined in our six programme principles:
- Promoting empowerment
- Working in partnership with others
- Ensuring accountability and promoting responsibility
- Addressing discrimination
- Promoting the non-violent resolution of conflicts
- Seeking sustainable results