Today was one of the more relaxed days we have had so far in Argentina. We began the day by visiting Conin, a community center in Tigre for young mothers and their children. 70% of the children that come to the center are underweight due to malnourishment. At the center, we were able to volunteer our time to play with the kids, cook and clean. Following lunch downtown, we went to a tango lesson! I got to dance with Jenna, and in my opinion we were amazing. It was a little tricky to get the hang of it, but we figured it out.
Yesterday we visited Tigre, where we spent time in the wealthier areas of the municipality. We saw beautiful yachts and ate lunch at a boat club. In contrast, we went back to Tigre today where we helped out a Conin, a community center in a more impoverished area of the municipality. The two days spent in Tigre showed a stark contrast between the rich and the poor of the nation. There are many pros and cons to having this kind of inequality. On one hand, the poorer population can benefit from the tax revenues generated by the wealthy population. As I mentioned previously, this allows for better access to healthcare overall in the municipality. However, the poorer population may not have the opportunity to grow and move economically. Without a strong middle class, class mobility is much more difficult. This may continue to leave Argentina’s rate of poverty at 32%.
The rise of globalization may lead to inequality as certain nations that are already wealthy develop rapidly. As the countries develop faster and faster globalization can sustain inequality by providing more opportunities to the wealthier population that the poorer population would not be able to afford. This furthers the divide between the rich and the poor and shrinks the middle class. Additionally, rapid globalization can lead to imperialism and colonization. When these occur, culture and tradition are often changed and over looked in the countries being controlled.
However, globalization may help poorer populations when wealthier countries offer aid. By offering aid, the poor will be more enabled to join the middle class. When countries offer aid to those in need, the playing field is more level. While this has the potential to be successful, the system does not always work this way. When countries rely on outside aid, they will not be able to sustain themselves in the long run.
Tomorrow we will be attending a guest lecture from the co-founder of a startup here. Then, we will go on a walking tour of La Boca, the art district of Buenos Aires. As we hit the double digits of our days here, I am sad to think about getting ready to leave.