Background Paper Number 208 (April 2010)
The 2008 global crisis in food prices pushed the number of hungry people past the 1 billion mark.
Worldwide, it underlined the urgent need to invest more in agriculture for the longer term and in nutrition assistance for vulnerable people now.
Background Paper Number 207 (February 2010)
Background Paper Number 206 (January 2010)
Background Paper Number 205 (December 2009)
David and his wife Lisa had never dreamed they would be relying on a food pantry to feed their four children and themselves. “This has taught me never to judge someone until you have walked in their shoes,” said Lisa.
As the economy began to unravel in 2007, the two college graduates found themselves with $30,000 of business debts and no hope of holding on to the car and truck repair shop that they’d inherited from David’s parents. After they lost the business, David found a job briefly as a mechanic, but was laid off when the recession deepened. Months passed before he found a job fixing copiers. The drop in their income has been so severe that they still use the food pantry.
Briefing Paper Number 8 (November 2009)
In the last few decades, U.S. foreign assistance has largely supported a collection of disparate projects and interventions rather than a coherent, consistent program that is flexible and responsive to conditions in developing countries. As a result, it has not had a transformative impact at the country level.
USAID should once again focus attention on broad-based measures and approaches that will improve agricultural and economic growth rates, and reduce poverty at the national level. This will involve renewed emphasis on agriculture and rural development, women's participation in the economy, education, infrastructure and capable national institutions and will require a much more deliberate development strategy carried out over a longer time horizon.
To plan and implement such a strategy, USAID urgently needs to rebuild its technical capacity, especially in agriculture, rural development and economics that has been allowed to diminish over the past decades.
Briefing Paper Number 7 (October 2009)
Many developing countries have had success in reducing malnutrition. But malnutrition remains pervasive and, in many countries, comes at a very high cost. Each year, millions of children die from malnutrition; millions more suffer ill health and face long-term physical and cognitive impairment, leading to lost productivity. The period between conception and the first two years in a child's life are critical.
The Obama administration's initiative to fight hunger offers an opportunity to improve nutrition of mothers and children around the world. In addition to the focus on increasing agricultural productivity and raising rural incomes, the administration should scale up nutrition interventions and integrate nutrition into its development programming.
It should use improvements in maternal and child nutrition as a key indicator of success. It should support country-led strategies, coordinate with other donors and ensure that U.S. actions and policies do not undermine nutrition objectives.
Background Paper Number 204 (September 2009)
The Obama administration's initiative to fight hunger offers an opportunity to improve nutrition of mothers and children around the world.
In addition to the focus on increasing agricultural productivity and raising rural incomes, the administration should scale up nutrition interventions and integrate nutrition into its development programming.
Background Paper Number 203 (June 2009)
As people of faith, Bread for the World members take seriously our responsibility to be good stewards of the resources
entrusted to us. For example, we have been working persistently to increase U.S. foreign assistance focused on reducing poverty—steering a modest portion of our country’s abundance to people who need it most.
Along with quantity, Bread has always emphasized quality; stewardship means using the resources we have as effectively as possible. This is clearly no longer the case for a foreign assistance system that is based on a law passed in 1961. A new administration and a new Congress make this an opportune time to change the way our country delivers assistance to the world’s poorest nations.
Background Paper Number 202 (April 2009)
Raphael Wanjaria Njararuhi is a young Kenyan working to stop deforestation. He and others in the Youth Intercommunity Network
are building and distributing energy-saving stoves to give rural families an alternative to cooking with firewood, which is depleting the country’s forests. The stoves are built with local materials—mainly soil and stones.
The U.N. Human Development Report 2007-2008, Fighting Climate Change: Human Solidarity in a Divided World, calls the work of Njararuhi and his friends an example of “taking practical and effective steps to tackle the current and future effects of climate change.”
Background Paper Number 201 (February 2009)
Valencia Shackleford says that the hardest part about being hungry was “not being able to function as a normal person. There was no energy.” Her sister Genora adds, “You feel like you’re a speck of dirt.”
Valencia is 10 years old. Her sister is nine. They live not in a developing nation, but in Alabama.