Food insecurity is a worldwide problem that affects over 258 million people in 58 countries. USDA’s definition of the term is the “lack of consistent access to enough food for every person in a household to live an active, healthy life”. While inaccessibility has always been present in society, recent events have caused extreme disparities in food. The World Bank attributes this record high to global “conflicts, climate shocks, and COVID-19”. Unfortunately, accurate data is difficult to come by, which makes it even harder for decision-makers to productively form effective solutions. That being said, there are multiple organizations taking action to alleviate world hunger.
According to World Food Program USA, food insecurity is most common in places of conflict; specifically to 60% of the hungriest people in the world. This means that where war goes, hunger follows. WFPUSA says, “When war erupts, instability forces people to find illicit and sometimes violent means of acquiring their necessities. In this unstable period where access to food is fought over, the risk of social unrest heightens.” This organization focuses on combating global hunger by supplying over 15 billion meals per year, feeding over 170 million people. Three specific ways the World Food Program USA achieves this are through emergency relief, resilience building, and global logistics. Emergency relief entails visiting countries and territories that are struck by conflicts or natural disasters. Here, food and aid are distributed to suffering people. Through resilience building, refugees and vulnerable people are taught about agriculture which allows for them to grow their food. Specifically, in Mozambique, there is a program in which women nurture cassava crops “as a part of a seed multiplication program”. Similarly in Bangladesh, villagers who are willing to “build and raise an embankment to protect their land and homes from intense monsoon floods” earn both food and money in return.
U.S. Hunger is a hunger relief organization that addresses food insecurity both nationally and globally. The group was formed in 2010 intending to send meals to Haiti following the 7.0 magnitude earthquake that struck the nation. As the organization grew, so did its outreach. One way U.S. Hunger aids food insecurity is through meal-packing events. There, volunteers construct meal package preparation stations to assemble goods to distribute to those in need. Music plays as they work making for an upbeat and fun process. Since U.S. Hunger’s inception, they have touched the lives of people in 53 countries by providing 155 million meals to people in need.
While there is still much more to be done in terms of global food insecurity, these organizations are paving the way for many others to follow. For ways that you can get involved and fight global hunger, check out these resources: