Policy Change

This is an important time to get involved and make your voice heard. Congress and the president are making major decisions that could seriously harm individuals and families living in poverty and at risk of hunger. Bread for the World’s policy agenda focuses on the issues that will put our country and world on track to ending hunger by 2030.

These are some of the issues that Congress or the administration need to address in order to accomplish this goal.

A Budget to End Hunger by 2030

Right now, the biggest threat to people struggling with hunger and poverty continues to be the threat of large budget cuts. Your advocacy is critical in ensuring that spending bills provide the strongest support possible for anti-hunger and anti-poverty efforts in the United States and around the world. Bread for the World's 2018 Offering of Letters campaign asks Congress to invest in and protect key programs that help improve the lives of men, women, and children facing hunger and poverty in the United States and around the world.

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Increase funding for global maternal and child nutrition

The U.S. government plays a crucial role in the fight to end malnutrition among mothers and children overseas. Our nation’s continued commitment is key to ending this global scourge. Bread for the World wants Congress to increase funding for the nutrition and health of mothers, newborns, and young children. Bread and its partners believe that more funding for nutrition programs is needed in fiscal year 2017. Increasing U.S. investment in global maternal and child nutrition is central to successful development and helps improve the potential of millions of people. This was the focus of Bread's 2016 Offering of Letters Campaign.

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Criminal Justice Reform

There is growing bipartisan momentum for reforming the U.S. criminal justice and prison systems. Formerly incarcerated people are far more likely to face hunger and poverty. Many employers refuse to hire people with criminal records. Laws ban people with various convictions from accessing certain safety-net programs. Without income and without access to federal benefits, returning citizens are vulnerable to hunger and recidivism.

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International Food-Aid

In overseas emergencies, our federal government often sends assistance in the form of food aid. While food is an important tool to saving millions of lives each year, it is time to update the government’s programs in this area to enable them to respond better in a 21st century, globalized world. Reforms to the food-aid programs would allow food aid to benefit tens of millions more people each year—at no additional cost to U.S. taxpayers.

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One of the major reasons people leave their home countries is to escape poverty and improve their livelihoods. While reducing poverty may not be the primary goal of most contemporary immigration policy-reform efforts, it should certainly be one of its clear goals. Undocumented immigrants suffer disproportionately from food insecurity and poverty once they arrive in the United States. Lack of legal status contributes to the economic insecurity and exploitation of undocumented immigrants. It also means that they have limited access to the social safety net in the United States. Many undocumented people, specifically children, only know the U.S. as home. That is why reforming our broken immigration system must include a responsible pathway to earned citizenship.

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Learn More About These Issues

Bread for the World’s policy agenda focuses on the most timely issues that impact hunger. Use the links below to learn more about how the following issues impact people who experience hunger.

Photo: Bread for the World

Agriculture and Trade

Trade can be a powerful tool for the reduction of poverty in developing nations. But U.S. agriculture and trade policy has sometimes undermined the efforts of African countries to take the first step out of poverty. Learn more.

Advocacy is hard work, and sometimes the victories do not come right away. But Bread has been doing advocacy for decades and has the expertise, experience, and track record for bringing hope and opportunity. Photo: Joe Molieri / Bread for the World

U.S. Federal Budget

The federal budget is statement of who we are as a nation. It is more than a financial document. It is a moral one. “For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also” (Matthew 6:21). This applies to nations as well as people. Learn more.

Here are some concerns you can include in your prayers right now. Pray for: •	people who experience persistent hunger, particularly women and children. Photo: Laura Pohl / Bread for the World

Tax Credits

When you think about a household budget, what are the expenses? Big ones like rent, transportation, child care, and utilities are mostly fixed expenses. Food ends up being the most flexible necessary budget item. With tax policies we can protect money that many low-income families need for food. Learn more.

Photo: Joe Molieri / Bread for the World

Incarceration and Hunger

Bread for the World believes that our criminal justice system is broken. The inequities in the system are stark and alarming. The brokenness of the criminal justice system leads to hunger and poverty. Bread is committed to doing our part to end hunger and poverty in ways that advance justice. Learn more.

Tammanna Akter and Joy in Barisal, Bangladesh. Photo by Laura Pohl / Bread for the World

Global Nutrition

Ending hunger around the world is not just about providing people with enough food — the calories. It’s also about providing the right nutrients. Globally, 165 million children are stunted and will not have the chance to achieve their full potential because of poor nutrition early in life. Learn more.

Think of foreign assistance, and you might picture food relief or rebuilding towns following disasters. However, U.S. foreign assistance includes many long-term development programs to break the cycle of hunger and poverty. Photo: Eskinder Debe / UN

Foreign assistance

Think of foreign assistance, and you might picture food relief or rebuilding towns following disasters. However, U.S. foreign assistance includes many long-term development programs to break the cycle of hunger and poverty. Learn more.

Santiago Cruz, a farmer in Oaxaca, Mexico. Photo: Laura Pohl / Bread for the World

Immigration Reform

Bread for the World sees global progress against poverty as progress against hunger as well. One of the major reasons people leave their home countries is to escape poverty and improve their livelihoods. Read more.

Assistance from the U.S. government helps people help themselves. Photo: UN / Tim McKulka

International Food-Aid

When a disaster strikes – such as 2013’s typhoon in the Philippines, or 2010’s earthquake in Haiti, or the crisis in Syria – people overseas receive emergency food from the United States. The government also provides ongoing food aid to address the “silent disaster” of hunger and malnutrition. Learn more.

Food shortages in developing countries are common. The people most affected are smallholder farmers and their families who depend on their own surplus to survive between harvests. Photo: UN/Logan Abassi

Climate change

People in many poor countries suffer from climate change even though they contribute least to greenhouse gas emissions. The effects of climate change are becoming more noticeable in wealthier parts of the world, but low-income countries are likely to remain the most vulnerable. Learn more.

Federal nutrition programs for children are a critical part of the fight against hunger.  Photo: Joe Molieri / Bread for the World

Nutrition in the United States

One in eight Americans lives in a household that struggles to put food on the table. Federal nutrition programs provide meals for millions of low-income working families, children, veterans, older Americans, people with disabilities, and other vulnerable populations. Learn more.

from our Resource Library

For Education

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

  • U.S. Hunger and Poverty State Fact Sheets

    These fact sheets provide a snapshot of hunger and poverty in the United States and in each state plus Washington, D.C. 

  • Fact Sheet: Hunger by the Numbers

    In 2017, 11.8 percent of households in the U.S.—40 million people—were food-insecure, meaning that they were unsure at some point during the year about how they would provide for their next meal.

  • 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...


Changing Climate, Changing Farmers

February 7, 2017


April 10, 2018

The Jobs Challenge

From the Blog