Maria tries to live on just £1 a day

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A Portstewart woman will attempt to live on just £1 a day in a bid to raise awareness of hunger and poverty.

Maria Ward will try to get by on £5 for five days to give a glimpse into the lives of 1.4 billion people who have no choice but to live below the poverty line every day – and who have to make £1 cover a lot more than just food.

Maria is taking part in Live Below the Line to raise funds for international humanitarian organisation, Concern Worldwide.

Explaining why she is taking up the challenge, Maria says: “I think the Live Below the Line campaign is an excellent way of helping people understand the human side of hunger and is also a great way of raising general awareness on the issue of extreme poverty.

“As we get ready to host the G8 in Northern Ireland this year I think it’s especially important for people to show that they care about this issue so that our government will put tackling hunger and poverty high up the agenda during their meetings.”

“I imagine it will be a challenge,” continues Maria.

“I think the hardest part of the challenge will be eating bland food and turning down the free food other people offer to me! But I am looking forward to it and raising money for Concern - any donations received will be much appreciated.

Speaking about the imaginative challenge, Peter Anderson, Head of Concern in Northern Ireland, says: “We believe it will help people understand the difficult decisions people living in extreme poverty have to make every day.

“Their choice is not the choice between brown or white rice, but often the choice between food or lifesaving healthcare for loved ones. I’ll be living below the line for the first time this year too and I wish Maria all the best.”

Live Below the Line will be held from April 29 until May 3. If you’d like to find out more or to sign up for the challenge visit

Left: Maria Ward.