Eight Hurdles That Get in the Way of the Poor Raising Themselves Out of Poverty

Bright Hope’s goal is to build a self-sustaining system that lifts the poor out of poverty and keeps them from slipping back into deep poverty.  So, what are the forces that work against building a pathway out of poverty? What makes helping the poor so challenging?   

  1. Lack of education – Most of the extreme poor can’t read.  Therefore, we need to teach skills like farming techniques and Bible training in an oral context. 
  2. Limited Skills – Most of the extreme poor have limited skill sets.  Expanding their skill sets and discovering new talents can lead to a better, fuller life.  
  3. Crime – Slum communities especially are fraught with danger.  Being inside before dusk is important for children, young women, and young men.  
  4. Addictions – When you are poor, seeking escape from reality is a daily temptation.   Drugs and alcohol are prevalent in slums and even available in rural villages.   
  5. Government – Many governments in countries of extreme poverty are corrupt. In many places, stealing aid given by the U.S. or other governments and asking for bribes to get standard services and permits is the norm and is frustrating and costly. 
  6. Police – Unfortunately, sometimes even the police are working against you.  Bribes offered by gangs keep police out of slums and from arresting criminals.  Victims can lose property, and loved ones can be murdered if they cross the wrong person. 
  7. Illnesses – Dirty water, lack of nourishing foods, and unsanitary cooking conditions can lead to poor health.  Getting sick and not working in the field or showing up at the market can mean the difference between eating and starving.  
  8. Depression – All the above factors weigh heavily on the poor.  Losing hope and giving up, not believing in a loving God is often a result of years of struggle.  People need Hope to overcome their circumstances.  

As you can see, many of these “hurdles” are huge.

Together they seem insurmountable.  But remember, “with God nothing is impossible” (Matthew 19:26). God provides Hope, and Hope provides energy to learn new skills and ways of living that make life better.  Just getting a person living in extreme poverty started down the path of faith can bring significant life change.   

Often it is prayer that ignites the poor to change and begin to have Hope.  Even a short one-minute prayer every few weeks makes a difference.  I have seen it with my own eyes.   

That’s why I need you to join our Prayer Team (Prayer Team). 

Bright Hope will send you a prayer request from the areas we serve or a praise item to thank God for specific progress a few times a month.  We primarily use texting to communicate these requests, but sometimes we also email these requests.  

Are you willing to say a 30-second prayer every other week for the poor?   Sign up HERE. 

If you’d like to learn more about Bright Hope, check out our cornerstone blogs: 

When Hope for Today Makes Tomorrow Possible 

Hope for Tomorrow: Sometimes Poverty Alleviation is Simple 

Hope for Eternity: Jesus Cares for the Poor 

Bright Hope, a Holistic Ministry Meeting the Needs of the Poor 

Grow. Change. Impact: The Power of Mutual Transformation 


C.H. Dyer
C.H. Dyer

Hi, I am C.H. Dyer. I have a passion for helping those living in extreme poverty and a knack for getting people engaged with the poor. I believe if you are faithful and generous with what you have, God will transform you and your family’s hearts and minds, just as your gifts can bring physical transformation to the poor. My angel wife, Anne, and three kids are my inspiration. And I also happen to have been leading Bright Hope for the past two decades.