How Does Poverty Affect People in Scotland?

Did you know that more than one billion people live on less than one dollar a day and almost half of the global population on less than 2 dollars? Find out more about poverty in Scotland, who it affects and where to find support. 

What is Poverty?

When you think about poverty you might think about a lack of food, water and shelter. That is one element of poverty, but poverty also includes a lack of basic human needs such as sanitation, health, education and information. 

Who is affected? 

Poverty isn't something that only affects people in other countries. In Scotland, more than half a million people, including 230,000 children, live in poverty.  

  • Every 18 minutes a household becomes homeless in Scotland (Shelter report)
  • 800,000 people are too poor to get involved in common social activities 
  • Over 210,000 people received three-day emergency food supplies from food banks (Trussell Trust report)

What is being done? 

The Scottish Government are working to try and end poverty, through what is known as national targets. These are: 

  • To improve education and give children the best start in life 
  • To assist young people to become confident individuals and responsible citizens 
  • To tackle inequality and promote an inclusive and fair society 
  • To improve life chances of children, young people and families 
  • To ensure that public services such as housing, meet our needs 

Poverty is a national and global issue which can affect everyone and which can also be tackled by all.  

Where can I find support?

There are lots of organisations that can help support people living in poverty. If you need support you contact: 

If you just need someone to talk to confidentially you can call the Samaritans 24hrs a day, on 116 123.