- Acerca del Hambre
- Erradicar el Hambre
- Nuestro Impacto
- Cómo Puede Ayudar
By Michele Learner, Bread for the World Institute
El Niño is a natural phenomenon -- a warming of the Pacific Ocean that happens every few years – but climate change is worsening its effects. This year’s El Niño is the strongest on record and has left at least 30 million people without reliable access to food. Altogether, more than a dozen countries have been affected.
El Niño has exacerbated the already severe drought in southern Africa. The U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA, part of the Commerce Department) says that El Niño has been weakening since April 2016, but its effects continue. According to the U.S. Office of Foreign Disaster Assistance, in fact, poor conditions in southern African countries are expected to persist through April 2017. Malnutrition as well as crop failure, water scarcity, and precarious conditions for livestock are part of the fallout.
U.S. ambassadors or charge d’affaires have formally declared disaster conditions in Mozambique, Swaziland, Zimbabwe, Lesotho, Malawi, and Madagascar. Other victims of the severe weather live in Zimbabwe, Namibia, and Ethiopia.
The regional organization SADC (Southern African Development Community) has deployed teams to assess post-harvest conditions. They found that throughout the region, harvest failures are contributing to higher food prices. With fewer jobs as hired farm laborers available, food has become prohibitively expensive. As Bread for the World Institute explained during the global food price crisis of 2007-2008, the sudden spikes in the prices of staple crops and the price volatility that has become the “new normal” since then lead to families being forced to pull their children out of school to help earn a living, sell their livestock at below-market rates before the animals become sick or die, or use other types of “negative coping strategies.”
USAID reports that so far in 2016, it has provided nearly $75 million in humanitarian assistance to countries in southern Africa to help them respond to drought and food insecurity. The assistance includes both distributing food to vulnerable families and providing them with seeds and other necessities for the upcoming planting season.
Please see this USAID resource for more information about how to help directly.
Michele Learner is associate editor at Bread for the World Institute.
This year’s El Niño is the strongest on record and has left at least 30 million people without reliable access to food.
Hunger and food insecurity add at least $160 billion a year to U.S. healthcare costs.
Even before Hurricanes Irma and Maria struck Puerto Rico, hunger and food insecurity were much more common among Puerto Ricans than among their fellow U.S. citizens in the 50 states.
Before the hurricanes, 1.5 million Puerto Ricans were food insecure. The child food insecurity rate was...
By Marlysa D. Gamblin and Margot Nitschke
Ending hunger in the United States is within reach, explain Marlysa Gamblin and Margot Nitschke, in Getting to Zero Hunger by 2030...
A brief examination of the biblical approach to health as a hunger issue.
Includes an introduction to the issue, a Scriptural reflection, practical actions you can take, and a prayer.
Thank you for inviting me to preach here at Duke University Chapel. And I especially want to thank the Bread for the World members who have come this morning.
Bruce Puckett urged...
In this issue: Another Great Year for Bread; Catholics Begin Observance of Holy Year of Mercy; Serving on ‘God’s Wave Length’ for 39 Years; and more.
A set of how-to sheets for carrying out advocacy and fact sheets on the current issues Bread for the World is working on.
For new and current Bread grassroots hunger activists.
Ideal as a starter toolkit for new Bread activists or as a set of updates for current activists.
Unnecessarily long prison sentences, combined with the lack of rehabilitative programs for people in prison, exacerbate hunger, poverty, and existing inequalities.
Overly harsh mandatory minimum prison sentences have contributed to the rapid increase of our country’s prison population. The...
Learn more about the principles that Bread for the World supports regarding health reform.