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IELTS essay, topic: Everybody should pay a small amount from their income to help people in poverty (agree/disagree)

This is a model response to a Writing Task 2 topic from High Scorer’s Choice IELTS Practice Tests book series (reprinted with permission). This answer is close to IELTS Band 9.

Set 4 General Training book, Practice Test 18

Writing Task 2

You should spend about 40 minutes on this task.

Write about the following topic:

Everybody today should pay a small amount from their income in order to help people who are homeless and / or suffering great poverty. To what extent do you agree or disagree with this?

Give reasons for your answer and include any relevant examples from your knowledge or experience.

You should write at least 250 words.

Sample Band 9 Essay

Homelessness and poverty is a terrible but topical issue in both more economically advanced and less industrialised countries. To deal with this, many people feel that a small proportion of everyone’s income should be used to aid the homeless and poor. This could create more opportunities and change the lives of many disadvantaged people for the better.

Though there are certain facilities such as shelters and soup kitchens to aid the poor and homeless, it is clear that this is not enough. In the U.S. alone, a very developed country in itself, nearly two million people are homeless. These facilities can lend a helpful hand; however, they do not help eradicate the problem. Those people who are homeless or poor can have trouble finding jobs, or, if they are lucky to gain employment, the pay may not be enough to support them and their families.

If a small percentage of everyone’s income was used to help build more aid facilities and fund organisations to help the homeless and poor, the suffering of many people could be alleviated. However, this is not a perfect world, and taxes are high enough for many people. A similar argument could be that a portion of the taxes already paid to the government should then be set aside for this cause, but of course government funds are usually stretched to breaking point as it is, as governments have so many financial responsibilities already.

Though the fundamental idea that people should pay a small percentage of their income to help the homeless and poor is admirable, it is unlikely that enough people would agree to it. People need all the money they earn after taxes anyway and, although governments already have too many calls on their available funds, in my view they should prioritise support payments for the homeless.

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