World Food Day 2011

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October 16, 2011

This World Food Day, we are facing incredible challenges in the fight against hunger.

The 2011 theme of World Food Day is “Food Prices: From Crisis to Stability.” Following the food price crisis of 2007-2008, in which 80 million people were pushed into hunger, food price hikes over this past year have pushed another 70 million people into extreme poverty, according to the World Bank. And, when people living in conditions of poverty are spending up to 80 percent of their income on food, such price hikes result in them spending less on food and other basic needs.

Moreover, 13 million people in East Africa are affected by the worst drought the world has seen in 60 years. In Somalia, the drought has led to devastating famine.

There are now nearly one billion hungry people in the world – and more than 90 percent of them are chronically hungry, which means they are not getting enough food every day to be healthy and lead active lives.

The Hunger Project (THP) focuses on building local resilience and skills so communities can end their own hunger. As a result, they are better able to cope when emergencies like drought, famine, or sudden increases in food prices do arise.

For example, small farmers access training and credit from our epicenters in Africa, and in addition to improving their own livelihoods, they also contribute to a community food bank that is stocked for times of drought. Or, as you can see from this story from Bangladesh, trained THP animators and leaders throughout our  Program Countries comprise a built-in network that is equipped to implement local emergency aid efforts in partnership with government or humanitarian NGOs.

As UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon says in his statement on this World Food Day, “Lasting soutions must cover the full spectrum of food security – from improving the resilience of smallholder farmers to deploying safety net programmes that help protect the most vulnerable.”

Learn more about what The Hunger Project does to address world hunger.

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