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"The proportion of the population living below US $1.25 a day in 2006 was 23 per cent or around 20 million people.
At the same time, about 44 per cent - or over 40 million Filipinos - were living on less than US $2 a day."

"Poverty rates went up continuously, from 24.9 per cent in 2003 to 26.4 in 2006, and then to 26.5 in 2009. This rise amidst high economic growth is puzzling."
"While the Philippines was able to reduce poverty incidence from as high as 30 per cent in the early 1990s, the actual number of people living in poverty has increased over the last two decades."
"Despite advances in sanitation, nearly 20% of the population still does not have access to clean and safe drinking water. Approximately the same number of people do not have electricity. Amazingly, there is still a vast number (>14%) who do not have the “luxury” of a sanitary toilet, but instead use a latrine or the nearest bush."
See articles at the page bottom

Biliran is a smallish island near the larger islands of Leyte and Samar. This is one of the poorest areas of the Philippines, and these sights are very comonplace.

You can deposit directly to our bank account.

These houses, hardly livable by Western standards, are in a town, and not particularly poor by local standards.

Local Transportation - very few can afford cars. Overcrowded dilapidated buses (called jeepneys) are common. A motorcycle is used like a family van.
Only the rich have cars. Motorcycles are very common, but too expensive for the level of poverty we deal with.


This is called a pedicab. Drivers make about
$2 usd a day. A ride costs 12 cents (equiv).

Bottles of Coke & Pepsi? This is a roadside petrol station
- those bottles are filled with gasoline for motorcycles.

Aritcles on Poverty in the Philippines:
  • Poverty in the Philippines Wikipedia (current)
  • Poverty and Growth in the Philippines (Sept, 2011)
  • Poverty hasn't changed much in recent decades (2010)
  • Rural Poverty in the Philippines (2007)
  • Understanding Poverty dated (2001) but not much has changed, except the population.
  • From the Australian Government (2011 - 2012)