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Washington, D.C. – A new report released today by the United Nations states that the number of people suffering from hunger has increased for the fourth year in a row. According to the State of Food Security and Nutrition in the World 2019 (SOFI), more than 820 million people worldwide suffered from hunger in 2018.
“After decades of progress, world hunger is increasing,” said Rev. David Beckmann, president of Bread for the World. “The U.S. government is not providing leadership in addressing the causes of this tragedy.” The SOFI report explains that conflict, climate change, and the global economic slowdown are the primary drivers of the current setback in progress against world hunger. Beckmann is in New York for the release of the report.
The report estimates that more than 2 billion people do not have regular access to safe, nutritious, and sufficient food – including 8 percent of people living in North America and Europe. Bread for the World’s 2019 Hunger Report “Back to Basics” addresses root causes of hunger and outlines solutions. The report will be released later this month.
The SOFI highlights one bright spot related to world hunger. The number of children under the age of five suffering from stunting (impaired physical and cognitive development) has declined by 10 percent over the past 6 years.
“This progress against child malnutrition is partly because our government has helped to promote new, evidence-based nutrition programs in poor countries around the world over the last decade,” said Beckmann. “Bread for the World and its members are campaigning to sustain and improve U.S. leadership in reducing child malnutrition.”
Bipartisan resolutions in support of sustained and improved U.S. leadership on child malnutrition have gained strong support in both the House and Senate. Bread for the World is urging Congress to pass these resolutions and increase its appropriation for global nutrition programs to $250 million for fiscal year 2020.
Afghanistan would be considered likely to have high rates of hunger because at least two of the major causes of global hunger affect it—armed conflict and fragile governmental institutions.
Malnutrition is responsible for nearly half of all preventable deaths among children under 5. Every year, the world loses hundreds of thousands of young children and babies to hunger-related causes.
Bread for the World is calling on the Biden-Harris administration and Congress to build a better 1,000-Days infrastructure in the United States.
“As you therefore have received Christ Jesus the Lord, continue to live your lives in him, rooted and built up in him and established in faith.” These words from Colossians 2:6 remind us of the faith that is active in love for our neighbors.
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The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) is designed to respond to changes in need, making it well suited to respond to crises such as the COVID-19 pandemic.
Bread for the World and its partners are asking Congress to provide $200 million for global nutrition.
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.