Stark reality: Report shows the have and have-nots of Havering
�A poverty map released this week reveals the disturbing gulf between Havering’s child haves and have-nots.
More than a third of youngsters in the Gooshays ward, which encompasses the Harold Hill Estate, live beneath the bread line, charity Campaign to End Child Poverty revealed.
That is more than 10 per cent higher than the national average of 21 per cent.
But just three per cent of youngsters in Upminster, one of the most affluent wards in the borough, are living in impoverished homes.
Its poverty rate is one of the lowest in the country.
The poverty line means that, after housing costs, all the household bills and a family’s spending needs are met by around �12 or less per family member per day.
In total five wards out of 18 in Havering have equal to or higher than average child poverty levels, although Havering as a whole falls well beneath the national average at 17 per cent.
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Quality of life
Cllr Paul Rochford, cabinet member for children and learning, said: “Although child poverty in Havering is relatively low, we do know that there are areas of the borough which are more affected than others.
“Tackling child poverty is one of our top priorities and is being addressed with two major regeneration projects, Rainham Compass and Harold Hill Ambitions, which aim to improve the quality of life for residents.
“In addition, the Havering Children’s Trust’s strategy includes working with vulnerable families, addressing the causes of poverty, helping people into employment and education and supporting them to make the most of their money.”
Tower Hamlets is the worst borough in the country for child poverty, where more than half of its children are impoverished.
Barnardo’s chief executive Anne Marie Carrie said: “Behind today’s statistics sit the most vulnerable children in society, whose life chances risk being compromised by our nation’s failure to tackle child poverty effectively.
“Barnardo’s 800 plus services work day in day out with families in the most deprived areas of the UK, and the grim reality that many families face is of vicious cycles of debt and impossible choices between heating homes or cooking hot meals for their children.
The government has committed to end child poverty by 2020.