February 11, 2014

Bread for the World Launches Campaign to Reform U.S. Food Aid

Washington, D.C. – Bread for the World launched its 2014 Offering of Letters campaign to urge Congress to reform U.S. food aid so it is more efficient and benefits millions more hungry people at no additional cost to taxpayers.

“We have a unique opportunity to reform the federal government’s food-aid programs so that funds are used more effectively and efficiently,” said Rev. David Beckman, president of Bread for the World. “This program has helped millions since its implementation. However, with changes in technology and transportation, it is time to modernize food aid to create a faster and more flexible program to help eradicate hunger.”

U.S. food-aid programs provide assistance overseas through in-kind donations, where staple food items are distributed to survivors of disasters or used to support economic development in poor countries, and by donating food from the United States to a country in need where it is then sold. The United States is the world’s largest donor of food aid, supplying 60 percent of the total and having helped 3 billion people in 150 countries since the 1960s.

The reforms that Bread for the World is seeking could help millions more around the world without increasing the cost to taxpayers. Reform should focus on easing restrictions on where food must be grown, how the food is transported, and how monetization is handled.

“Food-aid funding has decreased over the past several years,” continued Beckmann. “At the same time, more people than ever are in need of assistance. With these reforms, we can help millions and not increase the cost of the program. We must continue to help our brothers and sisters in order to eradicate hunger in our lifetime.”

Thousands of churches representing nearly 50 diverse Christian denominations throughout the United States will participate in Bread for the World’s 2014 Offering of Letters campaign. As part of a worship service or Mass, Christians will write letters to their members of Congress in support of legislation that will benefit hungry and poor people. These letters are often placed in offering plates and dedicated to God before being mailed to legislators. Bread for the World members generate hundreds of thousands of letters to Congress every year.

Tools
from our Resource Library

For Education

  • The Nourishing Effect

    Hunger and food insecurity add at least $160 billion a year to U.S. healthcare costs.

  • Mass Incarceration: A Major Cause of Hunger

    Mass incarceration has far-reaching effects in the United States. It poses a significant barrier to ending U.S. hunger and poverty by 2030—a goal the United States adopted in 2015. But the connection is not always obvious.

  • Advancing Nutrition through Food Aid Reform

    The United States has long been a global leader in responding to humanitarian emergencies. Food assistance that includes nutritious food for pregnant women and young children is both a life-and-death matter for individuals and an economic imperative for countries.

For Faith

  • Unity Declaration on Racism and Poverty

    A diverse body of Christian leaders calls on the churches and Congress to focus on the integral connection.

    Dear Members of Congress,

    As the president and Congress are preparing their plans for this year, almost 100 church leaders—from all the families of U.S. Christianity—are...

  • In Times Like These … A Pan-African Christian Devotional for Public Policy Engagement

    This devotional guide invites deepened relationship with and among Pan-Af­rican people and elected leaders in the mission to end hunger and poverty.

  • Sermon by David Beckmann at Duke University Chapel

    Remarks delivered October 1, 2017 at Duke University Chapel in Chapel Hill in North Carolina.

    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...

For Advocacy

  • Grassroots Advocacy Toolkit

    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.

    ...

  • Sentencing Reform and Corrections Act of 2017

    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...

  • Health Care Is a Hunger Issue

    Learn more about the principles that Bread for the World supports regarding health reform.