Across the Global North, online banking solidifies its dominance and apps like Venmo simplify mobile payments. In the Global South, people with little money to their name struggle to open bank accounts, get loans, and make payments.
Initiatives from Nairobi, Jakarta, Dhaka, and Mumbai provide solutions to issues ranging from discrimination against refugees to lack of access to sanitation. These solutions raise awareness and provide much-needed services for vulnerable communities.
The urban poor in the Global South lack access to banking and financial services, and women are disproportionately affected. They are less likely than men to hold a bank account, to take out a loan, or to borrow money.
Informal settlements are especially underserved when it comes to infrastructure, and they often lack recognition from the government as well as the means to access necessities like clean water or healthcare.
Improving migrants' access to education, affordable housing, skill development programs and health care are key steps to helping these marginalized urban newcomers achieve their goal of social mobility.
Many children in Cairo run away from abuse and neglect at home to seek refuge in the city's streets. The Hope Village Society has been working for the past 30 years to give these children an opportunity to reclaim their lives and their futures.
215 million. That's the number of children currently working, according to the International Labor Organization, as domestic workers, street vendors, beggars, washers, in both the semi-formal and informal sectors of the economy.
We need to find out and decide what it takes to put the unscrupulous and greedy factory owners and suppliers, businesses and their leaders, out of business and replace them with those who are committed to brining integrity to the business model and supply chain.
There are few ways to make a decent living in Bangladesh, but there are many ways to die trying. The cracks in the manufacturing system are showing. As workers grimly await the next tragedy, the world will ignore their warnings at its peril.
Access to water is a central issue for slum dwellers around the world. Getting water is often a time-consuming endeavor that involves waiting in long lines and walking great distances. Water is often more expensive for the poor than for the wealthy, demanding a large portion of families' budgets.
Whether due to resource constraints, capacity constraints, lack of urban planning and management, or lack of political will, many cities struggle to keep up with the increasing demand of an exploding urban population.
Something extraordinary has happened in the last few days in Dhaka, Bangladesh. Young men and women, from all walks of life, are occupying a major square. Like the young people in Tahrir Square, they are part of a global movement for winning and deepening democracy.
The commitment of consumers and stakeholders to a more deliberate and sustained demand for safe working conditions and wage levels can at a very minimum send a clear message of solidarity to factory workers and communities everywhere.