When Accompaniment Becomes a Calling
by Vernita Kennen
It’s easy to remember that there are people who are hungry in the world but it’s much harder to wrap your head around the large numbers of them. It’s even harder to translate those numbers into faces of actual people. The good news is that the UN. Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) had recently reported that world hunger has dropped by 167 million in the previous decade. There are now 795 million people who are hungry. Consider that the drop of 167 million is equal to about half the population of the U.S. And that 795 million is also the total populations of the U.S., Brazil, Russia, and the Philippines. Can you see some of the hungry faces now?
When the G-7 met in June, the world’s most industrialized nations committed to move 500 million people in developing countries out of hunger and malnutrition by 2030. The G-7 countries (Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom and the United States) have taken this pledge, but it will depend on the countries themselves to follow through with action. In the U.S., it will be important that Congress pass the Global Food Security Act, authorizing and improving the Feed the Future program. This program works with partner countries to develop their agriculture sectors and break the cycles of hunger, poverty and malnutrition. A program such as this which invests in small farmers is vital in increasing productivity, income and health around the world.
The Global Food Security Act has strong bipartisan support in both the House and the Senate. As H.R. 1567 it has passed out of committee but has yet to move in the Senate. Now is a good time to let your elected senators and representative know that you, too, support this important work of ending hunger and malnutrition for all of God’s people.