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Kiwi celebrities to live below international poverty line

Kiwi celebrities are challenging New Zealanders to join them this March as they live below the international poverty line for five days.

Petra Bagust, Ido Drent, Niki Bezzant, Eve Gordon, Brett McGregor and Michael Meredith will be taking part in Tearfund’s ‘Live Below the Line’ campaign, which challenges Kiwis to eat and drink on $2.85 a day between 12-16 March, The campaign seeks to raise funds to help some of the 767 million people around the world living on $2.85 or less a day – the NZ equivalent of the international poverty line.

Bagust, a celebrity ambassador for Tearfund, is taking up the challenge for the third year and encourages Kiwis to join her.

“I’m choosing to Live Below the Line because everyone deserves a chance to feel full, to feel loved, to feel supported and to feel hope. Let’s bring change to some of the world’s poorest communities.”

It’s the first time Meredith, McGregor and Bezzant have taken up the challenge. Meredith, who co-founded Eat My Lunch to tackle poverty in NZ, hopes to bring a greater level of awareness to the plight of those trapped in extreme poverty by participating in Live Below the Line.

He says the challenge serves as “a reminder of how fortunate New Zealanders are to have abundance of choice”.

“As a human being and a father, it is hard to fathom what 767 million people, half of whom are children, go through on a daily basis. Taking this challenge for one working week is no comparison. It’s only for five days... but for those who are affected it’s sadly a lifetime.” Funds raised from this year’s Live Below the Line campaign will support Tearfund’s ‘enterprise and empowerment’ work enabling vulnerable communities to form self help groups and farming co-operatives, which provide sustainable income opportunities and help to resolve social issues.

To find out more or register for the challenge visit livebelowtheline.org.nz.


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