217 posts categorized "Hunger QOTD"
Bread founder Art Simon (right) chats with Rep. Jim McGovern (D-Mass.) at the Lobby Day reception during Bread for the World's 2011 National Gathering. (Rick Reinhard)
"From the start, we made the decision to anchor our work in the Gospel of God’s providential care and saving love in Jesus. And we decided to help people link their faith in Christ with our stewardship as citizens in order to obtain justice for hungry people.
It seemed a simple and obvious way of following Jesus. But it also seemed a gamble. Would it work? Some told me it would not work, that Christians are wedded to direct aid only. They said a response that moves into the political arena would press a button too hot to touch. Stick to Band-Aids, they advised.
We prayed for wisdom and invited God's blessing, then decided to launch Bread for the World nationally. We were full of hope but also prepared for possible failure. To our astonishment, an initial mailing brought in several thousand members, and Bread for the World was off and running."
—Rev. Arthur Simon, founder of Bread for the World, on the organization's beginnings, 40 years ago.
This year, Bread for the World is celebrating its 40th anniversary! In honor of this milestone, we're offering a special $40 registration rate for our 2014 National Gathering, which will take place June 9-10 in Washington, D.C. After today, the rate goes up to $80. Visit www.bread.org/40 to register today.
Jane Sebbi, left, is a farmer with 12 acres of land in Kamuli, Uganda, and a mother of seven children. In this photo, she works in her field with her sister-in-law. (Laura Elizabeth Pohl/Bread for the World)
“There is a saying that helps to explain this challenge to work for justice, not just for charity. It goes like this: 'If people are hungry you can give them some fish and they will live another day. It’s called relief. But if you not only give a fish, but teach them how to fish for themselves they will be helped to feed themselves in the future.' This is often called development. That sounds good but it can be misleading if it is not followed with the next step. There is a third part of that saying that is critical to our efforts to move beyond guilt. We must not only offer the fish (relief) and assistance in knowing how to fish themselves (development), but we must move over in the pond and give them a place to fish. Or as someone has added, we must stop polluting the pond where they fish and give them a fair price for their fish. The third step has many facets to it. It is called working for justice, fairness. Justice includes efforts to end oppression and unfair practices of what Walter Wink calls the domination system. Moving from charity to justice is difficult because it calls for careful listening, increased awareness and critical thinking about the attitudes and values that have brought us to the current crises.”
—Excerpt from Beyond Guilt: Christian Response to Suffering (p. 42) by George S. Johnson.
In Bread for the World's April e-newsletter, Todd Post, senior editor of Bread for the World Institute’s annual Hunger Report, writes about how an agricultural development program and a cow have helped Rwandan Joseline Umugwaneza move out of extreme poverty. If we are to make progress in the exodus from hunger both at home and abroad, we must address the root causes of hunger and seek solutions that break the cycles of chronic poverty and malnutrition.
U.S. food aid has played a significant role in preventing global hunger and starvation for decades. But with a few common-sense reforms, food-aid programs can help millions more, while building resilience against future crises. Food-aid reform is the focus of Bread's 2014 Offering of Letters.
No reforms matter if funding for food assistance and nutrition programs are cut. As a new appropriations cycle begins, Bread members must ask their members of Congress to adequately fund U.S. food aid. Further creating an obstacle to a more just system of food assistance is a provision in a House-passed Coast Guard reauthorization bill, which is getting very little media attention. The reauthorization bill would require 75 percent of all U.S. food aid to be shipped on U.S. vessels. The resulting increase in shipping costs would reduce funding for programs that help support U.S. humanitarian efforts. Senators, especially those on the Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee, should remove such provision from a final bill.
Bread members spent two years advocating for improvements in the farm bill that would help end the hunger that affects too many in our world. We have come too far to allow our work to be scuttled by a provision in a Coast Guard spending bill. Funding international food assistance is essential to building food security around the world and ensuring that aid is not a handout, but a hand up.
A job seeker reads a copy of the California Job Journal as he waits in line to enter the California Job Journal HIREvent February 10, 2009 in San Francisco, California. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty)
"If someone told me I could get some decent wages and get some benefits doing anything, I'll do it."
—Kevin Meyer, a New Jersey man who lost his job in 2012, and then his federal unemployment benefits in December, to the Los Angeles Times.
The Senate is expected to vote on extending unemployment insurance this week. A few weeks ago, Congress failed to advance this bill by just one vote. It is likely that one vote will again determine the outcome. It is also likely that one of three Republicans holds that decision in his hands: Sen. Mark Kirk of Illinois, Sen. Rob Portman of Ohio, or Sen. Dan Coats of Indiana.
If your senators are on record with a vote to renew benefits, call them and tell them they have your support. You may even ask them to reach out to their colleagues Kirk, Portman, and Coats, and ask them to vote to renew emergency unemployment benefits (EUC) immediately. If you are from Indiana, Illinois or Ohio, it is even more urgent that you call 800-826-3688, or send a personal email.
"One in six Americans are food insecure…if you’re on a crowded subway in New York, most likely there are people that are hungry sitting next to you; they’re in your community, you may know them."
—Tom Colicchio, celebrity chef and anti-hunger activist
Photo: A young girl eats breakfast. (Margaret W. Nea)
Food distribution in Dokolo in Northern Uganda, 2008. (USAID photo/Anne Shaw)
“I remember when I was in elementary school, the teacher would ask us to bring in a bag. I didn’t have a bag, so I would fold the newspaper and glue the edges. The next day after class, the teacher would line us up outside the storage room. Inside was a huge paper drum with the USAID [U.S. Agency for International Development] logo. I remember that logo with the shaking hands and shield. In that drum was powdered milk. They would shovel that powdered milk into our bags, and they asked us to take it home and boil it and drink it. That was our source of nutrition.
“Our generation—people who received all of that benefit—has a loving memory of the United States for providing that humanitarian aid.”
—Chang Park, founder of Universal Remote Control and Bread for the World member, on receiving U.S. food-aid assistance as a child growing up in South Korea.
U.S. food-aid programs provide life-saving assistance around the world, but they can work even better. Take part in Bread for the World's 2014 Offering of Letters, "Reforming U.S. Food Aid," and urge your members of Congress to support changes to policies and practices that will enable U.S. food aid to help millions more people, at no additional cost.
"Jesus commands us to help those in need. Buying nutritious food grown in the country where it is needed means it will reach hungry children and families more quickly. Local and regional economies will be strengthened. More of the food-aid budget will actually be spent on food, which means millions more meals can be provided. Food-aid reform is a win-win-win."
—Rev. Gradye Parsons, stated clerk of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A) on food-aid reform
Bread for the World's 2014 Offering of Letters focuses on reforming U.S. food aid. Smart reforms would allow food aid to reach millions more people in need each year, at no additional cost to U.S. taxpayers. Learn more at www.bread.org/ol.
Photo: Jane Sebbi, a farmer with 12 acres of land in Kamuli, Uganda, on Thursday, May 19, 2011. Jane grows corn, bananas, coffee, amaranth, potatoes, soy beans, common beans. and sweet potatoes. She also takes care of pigs, goats and chickens.(Laura Elizabeth Pohl/Bread for the World)
—Roy Choi, the father of the food truck movement, who used his platform at the MAD3 food symposium to talk about food insecurity in America, and the food deserts in his hometown of Los Angeles. Choi called on the chefs in attendance to use their influence to help see that all are well fed.
Photo: Aidan Rodriguez enjoys spaghetti prepared by his mother, hunger activist Barbie Izquierdo. (Laura Elizabeth Pohl/Bread for the World)
"Hunger has plagued the world for thousands of years. But ending it is a greater moral imperative now than ever before, because for the first time humanity has the instruments at hand to defeat this cruel enemy at a very reasonable cost. We have the ability to provide food for all within the next three decades.”
—Sen. George McGovern (1922-2012), from The Third Freedom: Ending Hunger in Our Time
Photo: Rosa tends to her family's livestock, a typical chore for children in rural Guatemala, where she lives. (Joseph Molieri/Bread for the World)
"No one who works full time should have to raise their family in poverty."
—President Barack Obama, on Feb. 12, 2013, during remarks given before signing an executive order raising the minimum wage for federal contract workers to $10.10 per hour.
It's time to raise the minimum wage and make sure that every full-time worker earns enough to keep a family out of poverty. Read more in the 2014 Hunger Report, Ending Hunger in America.
Photo: Nate, a returning citizen in Ohio, who has been able to overcome the employment barrier, and now works to feed his family. (Joseph Molieri/Bread for the World)
"No more shall there be in it
An infant that lives but a few days,
Or an old person who does not live out a lifetime;
...They shall build houses and inhabit them;
They shall plant vineyards and eat their fruit."
— Isaiah 65:20a-21
As Christians today, we continue to serve people in need—our neighbors next door as well as those far from us as they struggle with hunger and poverty. In supporting reforms to U.S. food-assistance programs, we can mirror God’s intention for abundance and life. By engaging in this issue, we are participating in caring for our neighbors near and far but in ways that better reflect God’s desire that we all might build up our world to be a place where all are cared for and sustained. Read "God Wants Abundance and Life: A Biblical Reflection" to learn more about the importance of reforming U.S. food aid, the focus of Bread for the World's 2014 Offering of Letters.
Get updates on issues and actions to take on behalf of hungry people.