• Mads Kann Hostrup
4. semester, Sociologi (cand.scient.soc), Kandidat (Kandidatuddannelse)
This master thesis in sociology is written by Mads Kann Hostrup (Student Number 3005-2004)
at Aalborg University 2010-11. The supervisor is Lars Skov Henriksen. Any questions can be asked by email Madshostrup@gmail.com

The theme of this thesis is poverty and the understanding of same in a universal welfare state.
Under this there are two parts:
1: What are the consequences of low social benefits and poverty? Are they beyond the purely material aspects of life?
2: With what, if anything, can the voluntary organizations do to help those who suffer this kind of poverty?

The problem formulation is
What is poverty in a universal welfare state, how can it be interpreted and measured?
What are the consequences of this kind of poverty?
Can a voluntary effort help?

But why should we look at poverty in Denmark now? It has generally not been something that has been focusing on, and poverty is by many still understood as the absolute poverty one sees in, for example, the homeless on the street in Denmark and around Europe. At the same time the year 2010 was European poverty years. That's why this thesis is written as it is important to elucidate whether one with a volunteer effort actually can tackled some of the issues that may come in the wake of poverty

About Poverty
There are three types of poverty, extreme poverty, as known from Africa, the subsistence level, as we know it from earlier in Europe and relative poverty, which I think must be defined as a proportion of income (50% or 60%) in the community. It is my opinion that there is to be gain from the two first concepts in Danish context, or in any welfare states for that matter. There is no doubt that those who fall into these groups are poor and they should work with them and try to fight this kind of poverty. But if it is this kinds of poverty, one chooses to deal with, and strictly defines poverty in these ways, it makes no sense to deal with it in a Danish context. Because if you really are completely broke in a society then it is not the charities that can really help you, as this thesis deals with, but something else is needed. This thesis will cover the relatively poor, and respondents will all be in this group

There is poverty in Denmark. By this I mean that you can easily talk about poverty in the Danish context, even without diluting the concept. This should then be called relative poverty, and not the extreme poverty. One is forced to adapt the concept of the society we live in.

Poverty leads to deprivation of both material and social character. With this I will say that I see a clear causal relationship between poverty and deprivation. The material deprivation is not so a surprise - it is a natural consequence, but that people get hit hard in the social field can’t be desirable from any side and should certainly be limited, because the consequences might be that the people might feel degraded and thus helps to keep them in poverty and pass the negative social legacy for their children.

A volunteer effort can help to prevent some of the social deprivation. With this I mean that where the volunteers can really make a difference in the social field, in the material sphere, they have only limited possibilities and even if people are happy for things like Christmas help, is it not here that the volunteers really can make a difference. It is in the social sphere, where they fortunately can help to rebuild people's social circle and their social capital. They can help to give them a respite or experiences where they have the opportunity to be themselves, tanks up to cope with everyday life, and through this volunteers can help by giving these people the best cards to come out of poverty, but they can not lift them out of it. Ultimately, most important the voluntary organizations have to help the people help themselves.
Udgivelsesdato8 aug. 2011
Antal sider121
ID: 54978997