Living on $2 a day: 'It certainly is a very different type of dinner party with far more humble offerings' | opinion

CHALLENGE: Oaktree CEO Sashenka Worsman wants Port Stephens people to see if they can live feed themselves for just $2 a day.
CHALLENGE: Oaktree CEO Sashenka Worsman wants Port Stephens people to see if they can live feed themselves for just $2 a day.

Most people will have spent more than $2 on a morning coffee and that’s even before they’ve got to work, but for millions of families living in poverty around the world, that’s their daily budget to put food on the table.

Oaktree is challenging all Australians, including Port Stephens residents, to give their daily lunch order the flick and try living off $2 a day, as part of its annual Live Below the Line campaign.

Running from May 7 to 11, the campaign aims to raise money for work that fights poverty by encouraging people to dine on a mere $2 a day or $10 over the working week – the Australian equivalent of the international poverty line.

Raising funds and awareness to help end poverty is as simple as signing up to take the challenge online, and asking family and friends for support.

Education and youth empowerment are the most powerful tools in tackling the injustice of poverty.

Money raised goes directly towards work that ends poverty and injustice.

If you actually sat down and calculated how much you spend on food each day – not just the groceries, but the little extras like a can of soft drink on the way home or a sandwich at lunch – you’d see how quickly the entire week’s budget of $10 disappears.

If you can’t commit to a week of rations, there’s also the opportunity to host a Dine Below the Line dinner party, with a budget of $2 per guest.

You can still have a good time, but it certainly is a very different type of dinner party with far more humble offerings than your friends may have encountered before.

Live Below the Line was launched in 2010 and, since then, more than 50,000 Australians have become involved and raised $10 million for work that empowers young people to break themselves out of poverty.

This year the campaign is working with a number of ambassadors, including electronic band Art vs Science, Wentworth actress Kate Jenkinson and Sydney Swans player Sam Naismith who will all be spreading the word about Live and Dine Below the Line.

To find out more about the program, sign up for the challenge, download daily meal plans, a recommended shopping list and recipes, visit livebelowtheline.com.au.

Sashenka Worsman is the CEO of Oaktree, Australia’s largest youth-run anti-poverty organisation, with over 250,000 supporters.

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