Right now, 1 in 6 people around the world don’t have enough to eat. That number is skyrocketing, up 20% since 2005. In July, the G8 pledged $22 billion in new funding to combat hunger. But they still haven’t followed through on that commitment.
Every day, nearly 16,000 children die from hunger related causes. We have the power to save those children. Already, there is more than enough food in the world to feed the 1/6 of our population that is hungry. We just need our world leaders to respect their pledges and commit to a global hunger eradication plan.
It is a tragic reality that the United States, one of the richest nations in the world, is also plagued with a poverty-driven hunger crisis. The statistics tell the troubling story. In 2005:
* 37 million people (12.6%) were in poverty
* 12.9 million (17.8%) children under the age of 18 were in poverty
* 20.5 million (11.3%) of people aged 18-64 were in poverty
* 3.6 million (10.1%) seniors 65 and older were in poverty, an increase from 3.5 million in 2004.
(Carmen DeNavas-Walt, B. Proctor, C. Lee. U.S. Census Bureau. Income, Poverty, and Heath Insurance Coverage in the United States: 2005)
According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, 38 million people in our nation – 13.9 million of them children – live in households that suffer from hunger or live on the edge of hunger. This hunger and “food insecurity” are far too widespread in our wealthy society. Hunger in the United States is a problem that can be cured.
Hunger reduces a child’s ability to learn, decreases a worker’s productive energy, and weakens an elderly person’s resistance to disease. It weakens families, and prevents our nation from reaching its full potential.
The Campaign to End Childhood Hunger is a movement of people from all walks of life and vocations whose common mission is ending hunger among our children.
The Campaign is ensuring that children from families with low incomes are getting the food they need to be healthy and productive. Coordinated nationally by the Food Research and Action Center (FRAC), the Campaign is being waged by hundreds of citizen groups across the country.
Poverty is at the core of the world hunger crisis. The regions across the world that are subjected to extreme poverty conditions are at more risk to have their terrible situation exacerbated by outside forces such as natural disasters and war/conflict, thereby further deepening their difficult situation.
“In short, the poor are hungry and their hunger traps them in poverty.”
– World Food Programme