Last night as I laid my five year-old son down to sleep, he hugged me and said the following…
“Mommy love you. Mommy give you food.”
[by "you" he means "me." ] Although my son has special needs and cannot speak like a typical 5 year-old child, the above comments still serve as a stark reminder that so many people–so many children–around the globe go to bed hungry each night.
My son spent his first four years of life in an orphanage where going to bed hungry was not an isolated event. When he came home nearly 2 years ago, he was clearly malnourished and would gorge and hoard food constantly. His brother, who also spent time in an orphanage, was born malnourished as well.
Hunger is not a new topic in our house. Our boys associate food with love and it’s kind of a big deal around here. But now that both boys are home and thriving and food is abundant, it is easy to overlook and forget about the fact that hunger is a global reality for so many.
That’s why I support Oxfam America and encourage you to join them on World Food Day (Tuesday, October 16) to get the conversation started about helping people make everyday choices that can improve our global food system. They have outlined some principles to help you do it, called the GROW METHOD.
Make sure to visit the link above to download a toolkit to use in your home.
On World Food Day, the boys and I will be visiting a farm as part of a class field trip. I’m using this perfect opportunity to start the conversation about where our food comes from and how it gets to our table. For dinner we will talk about the GROW METHOD and what we can do to ensure that no person on this planet has to go to bed hungry.
Startling stats and more info:
• Our planet produces enough food for everyone, yet nearly one billion of us (1 in every 7 people) still go to bed hungry.
• About a third of the food produced for our plates ends up lost or wasted between farm and fork.
• One pound of ground beef for your family uses more than 28,000 cups of water to produce—that’s enough to fill 20 bathtubs to the brim, and then some!
While this may seem overwhelming, there are many ways that we, as individuals, can make simple changes in the way we grow, cook, eat and store our food to be more sustainable. So, as a special way to celebrate World Food Day, we’re asking people to:
• Sign up to host a World Food Day dinner discussion. Oxfam has tons of free materials including a discussion guide, placemats, and recipe ideas from acclaimed chefs Jamie Oliver, Mary Sue Milliken, and others. Everything can be found at www.oxfamamerica.org/worldfoodday
• Share GROW method recipes on Pinterest and we’ll add them to our GROW Method Cook Book (http://pinterest.com/oxfamgrowmethod)! Just tag your pin with #GROWmethod to add it.
• Snap photos of your World Food Day meal on Instagram and tag them with #WFD2012, then check out our site (www.oxfamamerica.org/worldfoodday) to see photos from all over the world.
So tell me, are you and your family going to participate? Share your thoughts please!!
I wrote this post as part of The Global Team of 200, a highly specialized group of members of Mom Bloggers for Social Good that concentrates on issues involving women and girls, children, world hunger and maternal health.
Our Motto: Individually we are all powerful. Together we can change the world. We believe in the power of collective action to help others and believe in ourselves to make this world a better place for our children and the world’s children.