How the Other Half Live
About the Show
Documentary series that aims to show what it means to grow up in poverty in 21st-century Britain. In each episode, a wealthy family decides to assist one that is living below the poverty line.
Series 1 Summary
There are almost four million children living below the poverty line in the UK. The effects of growing up in poverty can last a lifetime: average life expectancy in the UK is 79; for someone growing up in poverty it is ten years less.
Made by the team behind The Secret Millionaire, How the Other Half Live aims to show just what it means to grow up in poverty in 21st-century Britain. Each episode follows the story of two families as a wealthy family decides to assist one that is living below the poverty line.
Each family hopes that their children will gain from the experience by understanding what life is like for others. The series raises important questions about how we respond to the poverty on our own doorsteps.
Nine-year-old Grace lives in one of the wealthiest parts of the country with her mum Christine, dad Ken and brother Charlie (13). They have a big house and several acres of land, with two cleaners and a team of gardeners to help. But Ken comes from a deprived area of Glasgow and he wants his children to know that life isn't like this for everyone.
Meanwhile, ten-year-old Yolanda lives in a flat on a council estate with her mum and two sisters. She keeps her belongings in cardboard boxes and a suitcase because her mum can't afford to buy her any drawers.
Nine-year-old Brandon lives with his brother Marcus, mum Michaela and step-dad Shaun in one of the South East's most deprived neighbourhoods.
Shaun works 40 hours a week as a bus driver but the day-to-day reality of their lives often means going without. And council tax arrears mean the bailiffs have been round threatening to take things from their flat.
Brandon doesn't even have a bedroom. At night he goes to bed in his mum's room and is carried through to sleep on the sofa when she goes to bed. He can hear people fighting outside his block of flats at night. He wants to be an inventor but he doesn't even have somewhere quiet to do his homework.
Ashley (13) and Daisy (10) live with their mum and dad Sam and Scott in a secure gated community. They also have a house in Spain. Ashley is learning to play golf and has his own set of clubs. Daisy has a selection of designer handbags.
Scott works hard to provide a nice life for his family but his wife Sam knows that life isn't like this for everyone: she grew up in a 16-storey block of flats and doesn't want her kids to take their life for granted.
Although the families have never met, Sam and Scott have decided to help out Brandon and his family.
More than half of all children in inner London live in poverty. Eleven-year-old Sam shares a small council flat in North London with his big sister Harley, half-brother Teddy, and mother Toni, and stepfather Jimmy.
Jimmy used to earn £800 a week as a scaffolder, but had a 30-foot fall, and now gets up at 3.30am to deliver fish, earning £260 a week. The family are struggling with debts and the council has threatened to evict them because of rent arrears. With nowhere for the children to play safely outside, the family long for a garden.
Meanwhile, Rosie, who is also 11, and her eight-year-old sister Maisie have 16 acres in which to play. They live in a 25-room mansion in Kent's beautiful countryside.
Their father Peter is a self-made multi-millionaire. He also grew up on a London council estate, and worked as an electrician until he was 29, when he borrowed the money he needed to open a caravan park. Now he owns caravan parks across the country, but knows the assistance of others was vital in helping him achieve what he has.
Now Peter and his wife Julie want to help Sam and his family, as well as ensuring Rosie and Maisie understand the value of what they have. Meanwhile, Toni and Jimmy want their children to be inspired by what hard work can achieve.
How the Other Half Live synopsis
Documentary series that aims to show what it means to grow up in poverty in 21st-century Britain. In each episode, a wealthy family decides to assist one that is living below the poverty line.Episode Guide >