Women Key to Ending Hunger, Improving Child Nutrition
March 28, 2010
With The Hunger Project, based in New York City, Bread for the World calls on our nation's leaders to focus greater attention on the links between gender equality and hunger in the developing world if we are to reverse the recent worldwide increase in hunger and poverty, according to Rev. David Beckmann, president of Bread for the World.
"Around the world, 70 percent of those who suffer from hunger and poverty are women. In addition to serving as the primary caregivers for their children's health and well-being, women also comprise the majority of small-holder farmers who struggle each long day to grow enough food to feed them," he said. "Despite the vital roles women play, inequalities in education, economic empowerment, political participation, and access to basic health services have a strong impact on hunger and malnutrition. Gender inequality must end in order for us to reach the Millennium Development Goals to cut world hunger in half by 2015."
Rev. Beckmann added that the strongest correlations exist between hunger and lack of education. "Educated women in the developing world have higher self-esteem and are more likely to avoid early pregnancies, HIV infection, domestic violence, and exploitation," he said. "Also, an educated mother is far more likely to send her children to school, so that they can one day find a good job and break the cycle of poverty."
The United States has identified fighting hunger and improving nutrition as key priorities of its foreign assistance agenda. Sustained improvements in the lives of hungry and poor people around the world will only be possible if investments are made to improve the health and well-being of women and small children. Supporting women as food producers and caregivers is critical if we are to achieve the Millennium Development Goals and achieve a brighter future for all people.
For more information about International Women's Day, or women's role in fighting hunger and poverty, visit www.bread.org/womensday.
Bread for the World is a collective Christian voice urging our nation's decision makers
to end hunger at home and abroad.
Keywords: Alternative Medicine, Food, Food Products, Gender Health, Gender Medicine, Gender and Health, Government, Malnutrition, Pediatrics, Political Participation, Politics, Therapy, Treatment, Women's Health, Bread for the World Institute.
This article was prepared by Women's Health Weekly editors from staff and other reports. Copyright 2010, Women's Health Weekly via
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