Wednesday, April 29, 2009

World Hunger : Not just an international issue


In my efforts to contribute to the Unite for Hunger and Hope event, I did a bit of research on the topic to get numbers, facts and figures. I was hit by a great rush of sites and sources that sent my head spinning. Dying children in Africa, droughts that are making growing grains harder and harder, innumerable numbers of causes, organizations, campaigns…And of all the shocking information I found, these hit home :

According to Food Banks Canada, over 70,000 Canadians need food banks in Canada to eat every month. Out of those, 50.3% are families with children, because children under the age of 18 years old count for 37% of that number.

Food Banks Canada defines “working poor” as families where work does not pay enough to live and eat. 1.9 million families in Canada fit that definition. That number having increased from 6% in 1989 to 14,5% in 2008.

For all my readers that are not Canadian, keep in mind that the population of Canada is just a bit over 33,6 million.

I found the defintion of FOOD SECURITY on Meal Exchange :

“Food security exists when all people, at all times, have physical and economic access to sufficient, safe, and nutritious food to meet their dietary needs and food preferences for an active and healthy life.”

The five components of food security are as follows :
  1. Availability: Sufficient food for all people at all times;
  2. Accessibility: Physical and economic access to food for all at all times;
  3. Adequacy: Access to food that is nutritious and safe, and produced in environmentally sustainable ways.
  4. Acceptability: Access to culturally acceptable food, which is produced and obtained in ways that do not compromise people's dignity, self-respect or human rights.
  5. Agency: The policies and processes that enable the achievement of food security.
Unfortunately, even in Canada, one of the richest countries in the world, food insecurity exists because of unequal distribution of food, waste, unsustainable food producing, trade restrictions and policies on exports and imports and poverty.

The causes of poverty in Canada, according to Food Banks Canada, are surprising and many :
  • Shortage of full-time jobs with stable, livable wages
  • Income security system that fails to protect those in need
  • Lack of affordable social housing
  • Lack of affordable and accessible child care
I know some of you may think that this doesn’t fit the bill. But I think there are a lot of poor and hungry people everywhere. As important as it is to think and give globally, local action is also important. So in an effort to help today, I will invite ALL OF YOU to not only get better acquainted with the reality of hunger worldwide, but to also find your closes food bank and donate a bag of groceries!


Thank you for reading.

What will you do to help fight hunger in your city/country?


Easton Ellsworth said...

Yanic, thanks for participating in this great event along with hundreds of others. We've raised $445 and counting here:

As you said, hunger is truly everywhere - and it's absolutely preventable. Depends on how humans decide to live and share this world.

Small Footprints said...

Wow ... the numbers are staggering! In addition to donating to a food bank, may I also suggest eating meatless meals. It takes an enormous amount of resources, including grains, to produce one pound of beef (or pork or chicken). If those resources were available for direct human consumption, we might just solve the hunger problems.

Thanks for a most informative article!

Small Footprints

Yanic said...

Easton - It was my pleasure. I'm looking forward to participating in other blogger events. It's important to speak out!

Thanks for taking the time to read my post.

Small Footprints - I hear you about the meat thing! I've been a vegetarian for going on 15 years now and my husband has, by default, become a 85% vegetarian. The numbers are staggering there as well. I remember reading "Diet for a small planet" way back when and it was something like the grain it takes to feed a cow that will make 25-30 steaks could feed a family for a year! Crazy!

Thanks for checking out my post!

myblog said...

nice and good articles in here, im glad to be here and make a friends with u......ur blog is my favo in technorati