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 hit individuals and families living in poverty and at risk of hunger hard. Bread for the World’s policy agenda focuses on the most timely issues that impact hunger. These are some of the issues that Congress or the administration needs to address in order accomplish this goal.


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, and 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 more funding for nutrition programs is needed in fiscal year 2017. Increasing the U.S.'s investment in global maternal and child nutrition is central to successful development and helps improve the potential of millions of people. This is the focus of Bread’s 2016 Offering of Letters campaign.

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Protecting anti-hunger programs from harmful cuts


In Congress, political forces are pushing to slash poverty-focused programs. The tight fiscal environment means members of Congress are looking to make cuts wherever they can. Foreign assistance, SNAP (formerly known as food stamps), and other programs that help people struggling with hunger are at serious risk. They don’t have high-powered lobbyists and well-funded campaigns looking out for their interests. Your voice is critical.

Domestic child nutrition programs are up for renewal

Congress must reauthorize the national school lunch and breakfast programs, the summer meals program, the child care food program, and the WIC nutrition program for pregnant and new mothers along with their small children. This issue was the focus of Bread's 2015 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 reform

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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"May [the king] defend the cause of the poor of the people ..."

Psalm 72:4

Learn 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 African countries’ efforts to take the first step out of poverty.

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.

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.

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. 

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. 

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.

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.

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

Food-Aid Reform

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.

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.

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

Bread for the World is urging Congress to renew our federal government’s major child nutrition programs, including those for school meals, summer feeding, and the WIC (Women, Infants, and Children) nutrition program for pregnant and new mothers along with their small children.

from our Resource Library

For Education

For Faith

  • The Bible on Health as a Hunger Issue

    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.

  • Bread Newsletter January 2016

    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.

  • Interfaith Religious Leaders’ Pledge to End Hunger

    A wide array of the nation’s faith leaders have come together on the eve of Pope Francis’ arrival in the United States to commit ourselves to encourage our communities to work for the end of hunger by 2030 and, toward that end, for a shift in U.S. national priorities.

    We are deeply pleased...

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.


  • The State of Black Poverty: A Pan-African Millennial Perspective on Ending Hunger by 2030

    Over the past year and a half, about two-dozen young adults from the United States and countries in Africa and the Caribbean, have gathered virtually and in person to reflect on the effects of hunger and poverty in black communities. The working group has been considering socio-political and...

  • Fact Sheet: The Hunger-Medicaid Connection

    Congress is considering proposals that would jeopardize healthcare coverage for millions of poor and near-poor adults and children. 

    The bill under consideration, the American Health Care Act, would gut...