Soldier, travel writer, diplomat, politician, podcaster – but now Rory Stewart has a new mission. He wants to persuade you to send cash directly to the bank accounts of the world’s poorest people. Could the idea finally bring an end to extreme poverty?
Odd jobs are few and far between in Nearobo. Peter knows because every day he walks the streets of his village in south-east Liberia looking for one. In a good month, he might make $20 (£16.70). That’s hardly enough to feed himself, let alone his children.
But today things are looking up. As part of an innovative new donation scheme, Peter receives $40 (£33.40) per month for a minimum of three years. No paperwork. No requests for receipts. No catch of any kind, in fact. Just hard cash transferred straight to his mobile phone.
The 59-year-old casual labourer plans to use the money to buy materials for a new home for himself and his family, he says. “Although it is going to take long, I will continue until my house is completed.”
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