• Realizing the Dream: September’s Bread for the Preacher

    Did you know that each month the church relations department at Bread for the World produces a resource specifically for pastors? Whether you are searching for inspiration for a sermon you’re writing, or just a lectionary enthusiast, Bread for the Preacher is for you. After reading this introduction, explore this month’s readings on the Bread for the Preacher web page, where you can also sign up to have the resource emailed to you each month. By Rev. Gary Cook A…

  • Indian Farmers Facing Affliction

    Suicide can be defined as the act of taking one’s own life voluntarily and intentionally by an individual driven to despair out of a complex web of motivations. It is estimated that more than a quarter of a million of Indian farmers have committed suicide in the last 16 years. Even while this figure is […]

    The post Indian Farmers Facing Affliction appeared first on The Borgen Project.

  • Home Gardens: Alleviating Hunger in Developing Countries

    Homestead gardening in developing countries is now being viewed as a key to alleviating hunger and providing a source of nutrition for millions of people in developing countries. For low-income families, the quantity of food they consume must also be supplemented by adequate nutrition; research conducted by the Lancet earlier this year concluded that malnutrition […]

    The post Home Gardens: Alleviating Hunger in Developing Countries appeared first on The Borgen Project.

  • Irrigation Could End Poverty

    By now, it is a well known fact that clean water is necessary for drinking and hygiene. About 1.1 billion people go without clean water every day and must rely on polluted or infected supplies to survive. Even more than that go without basic sanitation. But, water is not just for human consumption and cleanliness. […]

    The post Irrigation Could End Poverty appeared first on The Borgen Project.

  • Essay 4: Farmers: The Key to Ending Global Hunger

    The fourth essay in the Bread for the World series, called Development Works, is all about farmers solving problems. 

  • Reality Checks for High Level Panels

    Overcoming the dehumanization produced by a system of consumption, and reinvigorating love in every human being’s heart. Union and harmonious interaction in diversity are the…

USAID’s Programs to Reduce Poverty and Hunger

Reduce Poverty and Hunger
In September 2021, the White House introduced two of USAID’s new programs to reduce poverty and hunger. USAID, the U.S.’s international development agency, provides aid to countries to support various sectors such as agriculture, trade and human rights. The latest programs of USAID include the Gender Responsive Agricultural Systems Policy (GRASP) and its latest collaboration with the Eleanor Crook Foundation’s Global Nutrition Financing Alliance. GRASP will provide African female policymakers with a three-and-a-half-year virtual leadership development fellowship to empower women in food systems. USAID’s collaboration with the Eleanor Crook Foundation will mobilize $100 million over five years to reduce COVID-19’s impact on food insecurity and reduce malnutrition worldwide.

GRASP: African Women in Agriculture

According to the U.N.’s Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), women account for 43% of the world’s agricultural workforce. Although women make up nearly half of all global agricultural workers, they may not receive equitable opportunities in developing countries. In some regions of Africa, women make up 60% of domestic farm labor. Despite their participation, African women hold limited leadership roles in food systems.

Issues regarding legal ownership of land, fair compensation and access to financial resources hinder African women’s leadership in agriculture. According to Feed the Future, “women tend to own less land, have limited ability to hire labor and face impediments to accessing credit, agricultural extension services and other resources.”

GRASP intends to address gender inequality within African agriculture by empowering female policymakers and inciting change in food systems. With help from USAID, GRASP will provide 100 women with mentorships, networking opportunities and virtual leadership programs targeted to create food-secure communities. By empowering African women in leadership, GRASP strives to develop improved and equitable food systems beneficial to all.

USAID and the Global Nutrition Financing Alliance

USAID has also joined the Global Nutrition Financing Alliance in mobilizing $100 million to reduce food insecurity and malnutrition in low- and middle-income countries. The Eleanor Crook Foundation (ECF) and the U.S. International Development Finance Corporation (DFC0 initially established the Global Nutrition Financing Alliance. The partnership combines public and private sectors to address the pandemic’s effect on malnutrition.

The ECF projects a 50% rise in severe malnutrition due to COVID-19’s economic and existing food programs disruption. USAID’s partnership will help catalyze comprehensive approaches to decrease food insecurity. The alliance will prioritize health and food systems along with food-oriented small and medium enterprises (SMEs). The collaboration seeks to address the financing gap among SMEs, bolster women-led businesses and advance food safety. The alliance also seeks to end malnutrition by 2030.

USAID’s Promising Next Moves to Reduce Poverty and Hunger

USAID’s latest programs will benefit not only those in need but also the rest of the world. GRASP can open new markets by supporting African women in agriculture. The program will also expand leadership and business in African food systems. With accessible development opportunities, African women can create social and economic change to address global poverty and food insecurity.

Additionally, USAID’s alliance with the Global Nutrition Financing Alliance will help reestablish the world’s progress to reduce poverty and hunger. The alliance’s monetary aid will also function as a sustainable investment in global food systems. In helping the world’s poor and hungry through programs like GRASP and the Global Nutrition Financing Alliance, USAID helps the world get back on track.

– Dana Gil
Photo: Flickr

The post USAID’s Programs to Reduce Poverty and Hunger appeared first on The Borgen Project.

Global Supply Chain Issues in the Developing World

developing world
More than half of the global population has received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine. The world is slowly recovering from the devastating effects of the virus. However, a serious post-pandemic symptom has emerged: the global supply chain is struggling. While the supply chain affects the whole planet, there is ample evidence of how global supply chain issues are burdening the developing world.

COVID-19 Measures Slow Down the Supply Chain

COVID-19 prevention measures across the globe have shut down processing plants and restricted transportation. They have included export bans or tight quotas to control supplies and prevent the spread of the virus. These measures have all contributed to disruptions in the global supply chain, which have impacted the developing world in a number of ways. Here are a few examples:

  1. Price volatility puts certain countries in jeopardy. Export bans and other restrictions cause prices to spike and drop unpredictably. That is creating price instability in countries that depend heavily on imports. For example, small pacific islands, such as Kiribati, that rely on imports but had grounded all flights have seen the cost of rice increase by 50%.
  2. There is massive food insecurity in the developing world. As Time reported, the World Food Program (WFP) estimated that the number of people who will starve has effectively doubled due to the pandemic. However, evidence suggests that there is not really a food shortage. Instead, transportation restrictions and protectionist trade policies are disrupting the flow of foods such as wheat and rice. Therefore, there may not be a food shortage problem but rather a food access problem.
  3. Humanitarian agencies have also warned of how global supply chain issues are burdening the developing world. They have expressed concerns that disruptions in the global supply chain may affect their abilities to provide commercial aid to developing countries in need. These agencies and nonprofit groups have experienced trouble acquiring necessary inventory and transporting that inventory to target nations. However, such hardship has not gone unnoticed. The IMF recently issued $650 billion in emergency currency reserves. In addition, it urged developed nations to use this money toward developing nations.
  4. There is also a cyclical relationship between global supply chains and poverty. Global supply chain issues exacerbate poverty and deepen inequality. However, the same poverty begets more disorder in the supply chain. For instance, if unable to profit from crop production, younger generations are likely to abandon traditional farming methods, threatening the smooth flow of the supply chain altogether.

Potential Benefits

Supply chain issues have not entirely punished developing nations. Some developing countries are benefitting, as the prices of their exports continue to skyrocket. For example, major oil exporters in the Middle East have benefitted from rising oil prices, according to The New York Times.

Leaders Look to the Future

Post-pandemic growth can be slow. However, government and private sector world leaders are actively working to speed it up. On October 31, 2021, international leaders met to discuss ways that they could improve the supply chain and make it more resilient in the future.

U.S. President Joe Biden urged for fair labor conditions, the end of trade restrictions and communication.“Now that we have seen how vulnerable these lines of global commerce can be, we cannot go back to business as usual,” the President told Reuters.

– Richard J. Vieira
Photo: Flickr

The post Global Supply Chain Issues in the Developing World appeared first on The Borgen Project.

The “Great Green Wall” Refugee Camp in Cameroon

Great Green Wall
Refugees in Northern Cameroon have “planted 360,000 seedlings” since 2018 to combat desertification in the Minawao refugee camp. The refugees grew the “Great Green Wall” with help from their host communities, the U.N. and the Lutheran World Federation (LWF). The Dutch Postcode Lottery funded the project with $2.7 million as part of an initiative to plant a continent-wide, 8,000-kilometer barrier of trees to prevent desertification, land degradation and drought. The Great Green Wall now provides ample shade to refugee families in Minawao, allowing them to grow crops and support themselves with a sustainable food supply.

Education and Execution

The Great Green Wall project began with educating the refugees in Minawao on how to plant seedlings using “cocoon technology,” which Land Life Company developed to protect seedlings against harsh environments. Cocoon technology functions by burying water tanks made of recycled cartons in donut shapes around plants’ roots. As a result, the plants have steady access to water, which the plants receive through a string that connects to the water tank. Knowledge of how to plant and sustain seedlings allowed the refugees in Minawao to plant trees in the area without relying too heavily on outside coordinators for help. With the assistance of LWF and the United Nations, the Cameroonian refugees were able to plant a thriving forest to support crops and life in an area that was once bare and dry.

The Wall’s Impact

More than 70,000 refugees have fled to Minawao since 2014 to escape violence from the militant group, Boko Haram, in Nigeria. When the large groups of refugees first arrived in Minawao, the area’s desertification worsened, largely because refugees cut down the few remaining trees in order to survive. The Great Green Wall project committed to addressing deforestation, desertification and land degradation in the area by planting more than 100 hectares, the equivalent of 250 football fields, of trees. Trees from the Great Green Wall project now provide shade, improve soil quality and attract water, all of which improve the quality of life for the refugees living in Minawao.

Development and Sustainability

The next step in the Great Green Wall project is to expand upon its growth and sustainability. The U.N. and LWF are working together to address challenges that arise, in part through reforestation and raising awareness about how the project and planting processes work. LWF has also created a strategy to promote more sustainable energy sources, including eco-friendly briquettes. Briquettes are energy-efficient and pollution-reducing alternatives to firewood. Many women have found new sources of income because of the eco-friendly charcoal, which they sell to refugees and surrounding communities.

The Great Green Wall project is still in progress, but so far, it has provided better living conditions to thousands of refugees in Minawao, Cameroon. Other countries may look to the project as an example of the benefits that arise from addressing desertification in refugee camps. Sustainable reforestation does not only benefit the environment — it can transform communities, offer economic opportunities and improve quality of life.

– Cleo Hudson
Photo: Flickr

The post The “Great Green Wall” Refugee Camp in Cameroon appeared first on The Borgen Project.

The “Great Green Wall” Refugee Camp in Cameroon

Great Green Wall
Refugees in Northern Cameroon have “planted 360,000 seedlings” since 2018 to combat desertification in the Minawao refugee camp. The refugees grew the “Great Green Wall” with help from their host communities, the U.N. and the Lutheran World Federation (LWF). The Dutch Postcode Lottery funded the project with $2.7 million as part of an initiative to plant a continent-wide, 8,000-kilometer barrier of trees to prevent desertification, land degradation and drought. The Great Green Wall now provides ample shade to refugee families in Minawao, allowing them to grow crops and support themselves with a sustainable food supply.

Education and Execution

The Great Green Wall project began with educating the refugees in Minawao on how to plant seedlings using “cocoon technology,” which Land Life Company developed to protect seedlings against harsh environments. Cocoon technology functions by burying water tanks made of recycled cartons in donut shapes around plants’ roots. As a result, the plants have steady access to water, which the plants receive through a string that connects to the water tank. Knowledge of how to plant and sustain seedlings allowed the refugees in Minawao to plant trees in the area without relying too heavily on outside coordinators for help. With the assistance of LWF and the United Nations, the Cameroonian refugees were able to plant a thriving forest to support crops and life in an area that was once bare and dry.

The Wall’s Impact

More than 70,000 refugees have fled to Minawao since 2014 to escape violence from the militant group, Boko Haram, in Nigeria. When the large groups of refugees first arrived in Minawao, the area’s desertification worsened, largely because refugees cut down the few remaining trees in order to survive. The Great Green Wall project committed to addressing deforestation, desertification and land degradation in the area by planting more than 100 hectares, the equivalent of 250 football fields, of trees. Trees from the Great Green Wall project now provide shade, improve soil quality and attract water, all of which improve the quality of life for the refugees living in Minawao.

Development and Sustainability

The next step in the Great Green Wall project is to expand upon its growth and sustainability. The U.N. and LWF are working together to address challenges that arise, in part through reforestation and raising awareness about how the project and planting processes work. LWF has also created a strategy to promote more sustainable energy sources, including eco-friendly briquettes. Briquettes are energy-efficient and pollution-reducing alternatives to firewood. Many women have found new sources of income because of the eco-friendly charcoal, which they sell to refugees and surrounding communities.

The Great Green Wall project is still in progress, but so far, it has provided better living conditions to thousands of refugees in Minawao, Cameroon. Other countries may look to the project as an example of the benefits that arise from addressing desertification in refugee camps. Sustainable reforestation does not only benefit the environment — it can transform communities, offer economic opportunities and improve quality of life.

– Cleo Hudson
Photo: Flickr

The post The “Great Green Wall” Refugee Camp in Cameroon appeared first on The Borgen Project.

End Time Worldwide Missions helps Nigerians Fight Poverty

End Time Worldwide Missions
For the past 10 years, Nigeria-native and missionary Abraham Sunday has used his empathy and deep understanding of poverty to help reduce poverty in Nigeria. He has since extended his work to helping people around the continent. Four years ago, he founded End Time Worldwide Missions to spread Christianity. However, he realized the urgency of first meeting basic needs. “You cannot preach to a hungry person,” Sunday said in an interview with The Borgen Project. As a result, he and his team focus on providing things like food, water and shelter for the people they serve. “I know what it means to be poor. I know what it means to be hungry. I know what it means to be homeless,” he said.

How it Started

Growing up in Nigeria, which is a country with a lot of poverty, Sunday had to drop out of secondary school. The way he grew up allows him to understand precisely what it means to live with nothing. He recalled a time when he turned to his mother and asked, “Why is there no one we can go to for help?” Then, she told him that he needed to be that help for other people.

Coupled with the profound poverty around him, the wisdom and encouragement from his mother are largely why he does what he does. Now, he offers the kind of help he desperately needed when he was younger.

Where End Time Worldwide Missions Works

End Time Worldwide Missions began its services in Nigeria. Within the immediate poverty around him, Sunday found an opportunity to do good and help reduce poverty in Nigeria. All of it began with small acts of kindness. For instance, when women came to his door hungry, he fed them. He recalls some widows in his community having nothing. After he gave them what was equivalent to $5, they fell to the ground and wept.

What might seem “small” in the United States is profound in a place like Nigeria, where 40% of the population lives on less than $381.75 each year. While $5 might not seem like much to a U.S. citizen, it can be everything to an impoverished person in Nigeria, or anywhere else in the world, for that matter.

Sunday bought books and taught himself mathematics and science. For years, he has taught at a local school despite not having a degree. When he goes on missions, he spreads knowledge to the children and adults he serves. Now that his organization has grown to about 30 individuals worldwide, Sunday is expanding his horizons. Because of the lack of access to health care in Africa, he wants to study medicine at a U.S. or Canadian university to reduce this issue. This way, he can additionally provide health care to the people in his own community and on missions.

The Organization’s Most Impactful Mission

Nigeria’s neighbor to the left, Benin, is a constitutional presidential republic with a population of 11.8 million people. It relies heavily on trade with Nigeria, which makes up 20% of its GDP. When borders temporarily closed in 2019, Benin’s economy suffered a major blow, likely reversing previous economic success. Poverty remains widespread, with a life expectancy of around 61.2 years old.

In February 2020, End Time Worldwide Missions went into Benin and completed what Sunday feels is its most impactful mission to date. When it got to the destination village, it realized that most of the children did not wear clothes and went around barefoot. Thanks to a U.S. partner that sent used clothes, the Mission distributed more than 1,000 pieces of clothing there. It was also able to provide people with food. Sunday and his organization works to uplift other Africans from poverty and spread the gospel.

Nigerian Poverty and COVID-19

A major factor in Nigeria’s poverty is the nation’s reliance on oil, which accounts for 80% of its exports and half of all government revenue. Consequently, when oil prices dropped during COVID-19, the country experienced the deepest recession it’s seen in decades.

Sunday describes the awful experience of living in Nigeria during the worst of COVID-19. The government enforced a lockdown, but many people staying home did not have food. During this time, Sunday did all he could to help neighbors and community members find a way to cope. Though he planned to go on a mission to Ghana, lockdown prevented that from happening. Still, he did what he could in Nigeria, helping his community in a continued effort to uplift other Africans from poverty.

An Inspiring Example

Sunday and his organization seek to help others, even if they have little to give. His profound empathy after having lived in poverty as a child mobilized him to help those suffering.

Abraham Sunday’s work is bringing the world a little bit closer to equity and prosperity. World powers like the United States also have this power vested in them, at a larger but equally significant scale. All acts of goodness are equally significant. If nothing else, Sunday emphasizes that “I want people to see the good in people. You have to learn to see the good.”

– Cameryn Cass
Photo: Flickr

The post End Time Worldwide Missions helps Nigerians Fight Poverty appeared first on The Borgen Project.

Examining 60 Years of USAID’s Foreign Assistance

USAID's Foreign Assistance
On November 3, 2021, the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) celebrated its 60th year of existence. The Foreign Assistance Act of 1961 made the formation of USAID possible. USAID’s creation stems from President John F. Kennedy’s aim to consolidate the foreign assistance work of several organizations into one main agency. Today, USAID operates in more than 100 nations across the world, fully or partially manages $24.8 billion in accounts and employs roughly 3,450 U.S. citizens to help fulfill USAID’s foreign assistance mission.

Official Mission Statement of USAID

As an agency representing the foreign assistance interests of U.S. citizens, USAID aims to “promote and demonstrate democratic values abroad and advance a free, peaceful and prosperous world.” Ultimately, USAID plays an instrumental role in making a reality the foreign policy values of the U.S. As such, “through partnerships and investments” USAID aims to “save lives, reduce poverty, strengthen democratic governance and help people emerge from humanitarian crises and progress beyond assistance.”

The Birth of USAID

Coming out of World War II, the U.S. stood as the world’s preeminent superpower. However, not long after, in 1947, the Cold War rivalry between the U.S. and the Soviet Union began. Looking to prevent the spread of communism, the U.S. realized its endeavors would require more than just military might — the U.S. would also need to win the hearts and minds of developing countries before the Soviet Union did.

Through diplomacy and goodwill, the U.S. hoped to spread democratic and free-market principles to as many countries as possible, and in return, not only stop the spread of communism but also open up new global markets for trade and shared prosperity. With this goal in mind, President Kennedy felt the U.S. needed a more strategic approach to foreign assistance. Therefore, he pushed Congress to pass the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961, which empowered him to then create USAID via executive order.

USAID Over the Years

USAID’s approach to international development has evolved over the years. In the 1960s, the focus was on large-scale capital and technical assistance projects in select countries committed to economic reforms. Gears shifted in the 1970s when the agency pivoted toward a more humanitarian approach that focused on widespread delivery of food, education and health services to the most impoverished populations. The 1980s brought about the increasing use of U.S. NGOs and for-profit contractors to fulfill USAID’s mission. In the post-9/11 world, development assistance in Afghanistan and Iraq would consume a large share of the USAID budget as the U.S. sought to rebuild these war-torn nations.

The Legacy

In the early years of USAID’s foreign assistance, the U.S. stood as the undisputed leader in international development aid. Through its innovative development and humanitarian efforts over the decades, it is clear that USAID has helped shape a better world with much less hunger, disease, illiteracy, child and infant mortality and all-around suffering than would otherwise be the case. Other advanced nations have since developed similar programs, with several countries now spending significantly more on official developmental assistance than the United States, proportional to their respective gross national incomes (GNI). However, the U.S. still leads in absolute spending, with $47 billion in foreign assistance obligations worldwide in 2019, of which, USAID obligations made up 45%.

In a November 3, 2021, tweet to mark the 60th birthday of USAID, Secretary of State Antony Blinken said, “Now more than ever, as we face historic challenges in global health, climate and other critical issues, it’s vital that our diplomacy and development go hand in hand. That’s why I’m so grateful to the outstanding public servants at USAID…” Ultimately, USAID’s foreign assistance transforms nations, improving the lives of millions of people while contributing to the U.N.’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and reducing global poverty.

– Jeramiah Jordan
Photo: Flickr

The post Examining 60 Years of USAID’s Foreign Assistance appeared first on The Borgen Project.

Examining 60 Years of USAID’s Foreign Assistance

USAID's Foreign Assistance
On November 3, 2021, the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) celebrated its 60th year of existence. The Foreign Assistance Act of 1961 made the formation of USAID possible. USAID’s creation stems from President John F. Kennedy’s aim to consolidate the foreign assistance work of several organizations into one main agency. Today, USAID operates in more than 100 nations across the world, fully or partially manages $24.8 billion in accounts and employs roughly 3,450 U.S. citizens to help fulfill USAID’s foreign assistance mission.

Official Mission Statement of USAID

As an agency representing the foreign assistance interests of U.S. citizens, USAID aims to “promote and demonstrate democratic values abroad and advance a free, peaceful and prosperous world.” Ultimately, USAID plays an instrumental role in making a reality the foreign policy values of the U.S. As such, “through partnerships and investments” USAID aims to “save lives, reduce poverty, strengthen democratic governance and help people emerge from humanitarian crises and progress beyond assistance.”

The Birth of USAID

Coming out of World War II, the U.S. stood as the world’s preeminent superpower. However, not long after, in 1947, the Cold War rivalry between the U.S. and the Soviet Union began. Looking to prevent the spread of communism, the U.S. realized its endeavors would require more than just military might — the U.S. would also need to win the hearts and minds of developing countries before the Soviet Union did.

Through diplomacy and goodwill, the U.S. hoped to spread democratic and free-market principles to as many countries as possible, and in return, not only stop the spread of communism but also open up new global markets for trade and shared prosperity. With this goal in mind, President Kennedy felt the U.S. needed a more strategic approach to foreign assistance. Therefore, he pushed Congress to pass the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961, which empowered him to then create USAID via executive order.

USAID Over the Years

USAID’s approach to international development has evolved over the years. In the 1960s, the focus was on large-scale capital and technical assistance projects in select countries committed to economic reforms. Gears shifted in the 1970s when the agency pivoted toward a more humanitarian approach that focused on widespread delivery of food, education and health services to the most impoverished populations. The 1980s brought about the increasing use of U.S. NGOs and for-profit contractors to fulfill USAID’s mission. In the post-9/11 world, development assistance in Afghanistan and Iraq would consume a large share of the USAID budget as the U.S. sought to rebuild these war-torn nations.

The Legacy

In the early years of USAID’s foreign assistance, the U.S. stood as the undisputed leader in international development aid. Through its innovative development and humanitarian efforts over the decades, it is clear that USAID has helped shape a better world with much less hunger, disease, illiteracy, child and infant mortality and all-around suffering than would otherwise be the case. Other advanced nations have since developed similar programs, with several countries now spending significantly more on official developmental assistance than the United States, proportional to their respective gross national incomes (GNI). However, the U.S. still leads in absolute spending, with $47 billion in foreign assistance obligations worldwide in 2019, of which, USAID obligations made up 45%.

In a November 3, 2021, tweet to mark the 60th birthday of USAID, Secretary of State Antony Blinken said, “Now more than ever, as we face historic challenges in global health, climate and other critical issues, it’s vital that our diplomacy and development go hand in hand. That’s why I’m so grateful to the outstanding public servants at USAID…” Ultimately, USAID’s foreign assistance transforms nations, improving the lives of millions of people while contributing to the U.N.’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and reducing global poverty.

– Jeramiah Jordan
Photo: Flickr

The post Examining 60 Years of USAID’s Foreign Assistance appeared first on The Borgen Project.

Rescued Food Market Fights Hunger in Canada

Rescued Food Market
According to the United Nations, almost half of all fruits and vegetables produced worldwide go to waste. The world’s total wasted food “is enough to feed about three billion people.” In the city of Vancouver in Canada, food waste is a rising issue along with food insecurity. The Rescued Food Market aims to tackle hunger and food waste at the same time.

Food Waste in Canada

In Canada, about $30 billion worth of food goes to waste annually. As a consequence of this food waste, Canada is responsible for a significant carbon footprint of “56.6 million tonnes of CO2-equivalent emissions.” Yet, in Canada alone, roughly $49.5 billion worth of “food waste can be avoided by taking specific measures.” According to the Food Stash Foundation, every one in six children in British Columbia goes hungry. With less food wastage, “consumers and society at large will be able to save money, support efficiency in the food and agriculture sector, improve food security and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.”

Rescued Food Market

A local Vancouver market seeks to aid in the fight against hunger by reducing food waste. Launched in October 2021, the Rescued Food Market is open every Friday to people from every income background. The market is the product of a larger organization that David Schein started in 2016 called the Food Stash Foundation. Rescued Food Market’s webpage describes the market as “a zero-waste grocery store that is stocked with nutritious surplus food from farms, grocers and wholesalers.”

Before the Rescued Food Market’s opening on October 1, 2021, the Food Stash Foundation collected surplus food and delivered it to charities and households in need. The Rescued Food Market itself operates through a “pay what you feel” policy and only asks shoppers to bring reusable bags to collect the food. By using the terms “pay what you feel” instead of “pay what you can,” the market aims “to eliminate any shame associated with not being able to afford the rising cost of food.”

The Success of the Market

Carla Pellegrini, the current executive for Food Stash Foundation, told Good News Network (GNN) that the Rescued Food Market aims to assist the Food Stash Foundation in distributing roughly 70,000 pounds of surplus food that the organization collects monthly. About “85% of that 70,000 pounds of food doesn’t even make it back to our warehouse, it goes right back out the same day with our drivers to other organizations,” Pellegrini tells GNN. However, at the end of a week, the organization still sometimes has surplus food that needs distributing. The Rescued Food Market assists in this regard.

In June 2021 alone, the Food Stash Foundation rescued more than 74,000 pounds of perishable foods, which, in turn, prevented almost 64,000 kilograms of CO2 emissions from entering the atmosphere. The overwhelming success of this food redistribution initiative not only helps protect the environment but also instills a sense of mindfulness on a local, community-based level through the Rescued Food Market.

Worldwide Communal Markets

Besides relying on the Food Stash Foundation’s surplus of food received from farms and grocers alike, the Rescued Food Market also encourages families in Vancouver to donate food that will otherwise go to waste. Indeed, community markets and fridges, as indicated by Katherine Oung in her article “Community fridges are lifelines for the neighborhoods they serve,” are especially crucial in areas “where traditional forms of food assistance are difficult to access.” Low-income families without cars, for example, would have an easier means of acquiring food at a community market than at a more remote food bank location. Community fridges are located throughout the world.

The Rescued Food Market brings to the forefront an innovative way to combat two issues at once. Reducing food waste is a significant step in fighting a more extensive, prevalent world injustice.

– Maia Nuñez
Photo: Flickr

The post Rescued Food Market Fights Hunger in Canada appeared first on The Borgen Project.

How Shares Uganda Supports Farmers

Shares Uganda
Many know Uganda, a landlocked country in East Africa, for its conservation of mountain gorillas and agricultural exports of cash crops like coffee, cotton, tea and tobacco. The nation is also home to the highest refugee population in all of Africa. About 76% of citizens reside in rural locations and the agriculture industry is responsible for the employment of about 73% of the workforce. According to Opportunity International, 41% of Ugandans endure circumstances of poverty. The nation’s agriculture sector presents the most opportunities for low-income families, youth and refugees to avoid poverty. Shares Uganda has tapped into the natural resources and rich agriculture aspects of Uganda to help aid impoverished populations.

Shares Uganda

The company’s main business objective is to “develop, finance, process and export added value organic agricultural commodities in Uganda in direct cooperation with small scale farmers.” These farmers, who also receive support to obtain organic certification, undergo training “to enhance productivity and to ensure a profitable and fair income with guaranteed procurement.” According to its website, Share Uganda’s overall mission is to create “organic and fair trade added value production chains locally that are ecologically, socially and economically sound” while benefiting “all parties in the chain.”

The organization contracts farmers in Uganda to grow organic produce like bird’s eye chilies, chia and sesame seeds for export to Europe. Other produce like sunflower seeds, beans and fruit are a priority to produce because they are in high demand in Uganda.

Registered farmers go through training to “produce a sustainable market-driven product.” Once farmers produce their crops, Shares Uganda purchases the produce directly from farmers, negating the need for a middleman. Without a middleman, farmers are able to receive higher compensation for their produce. The company also runs “a training program to stimulate Village Loan and Saving Associations that help” farmers to increase productivity and rely less on costly microfinance loans.

At the marketing phase, field officers monitor “every organic store on organic conformities, documentation and aspects of quality.” Before the growing season is over, the officers then “provide marketing training to each store official on record keeping, marketing and accountability.” This ensures high-quality products aligned with international standards.

Positive Impacts

The efforts of Shares Uganda positively impact communities in Uganda. Shares Uganda’s initiatives have led to increased income for farmers, enabling them to improve their quality of life. With more income, farmers are able to afford improved housing, access adequate education and health care services as well as necessary medicines. With the ability to afford the costs of education, school enrollment rates are increasing. According to the World Bank, primary school enrollment rates in Uganda have risen over the years, standing at about 95% in 2013. Furthermore, from 2013 to 2017, poverty in the northern region of Uganda decreased from 44% to 33%.

Looking Ahead

Results of drought in recent years have pushed back individuals into poverty, though, making the resources and support available through outside organizations that much more essential for farmers in Uganda. Over the past decade, Uganda has made strides to mitigate poverty with the help of organizations like Shares Uganda making the most of agricultural opportunities.

– Makena Roberts
Photo: Flickr

The post How Shares Uganda Supports Farmers appeared first on The Borgen Project.

Poverty, Natural Disasters and Climate Migration in Central Asia

Climate Migration in Central Asia
About 1% of the world lives in a climate hot zone, causing a concerning rise of climate migration in Central Asia. According to the World Bank, an increase in natural disasters could force 216 million people to migrate within their own countries by 2050. The increased probability of extreme climate patterns and climate migration leads to a bevy of other problems, including poverty. Severe weather events disproportionally disrupt already impoverished areas. Rural communities typically depend on agriculture and suffer the most devastation when extreme weather ravages their industry, income and assets. These people groups decide to move due to the increase in extreme weather patterns, creating a phenomenon called climate migration.

Natural Disasters in Central Asia

Within Central Asia, the majority of the population lives in rural areas. Agriculture accounts for about 10% to 45% of the country’s gross domestic product (GDP) and roughly 20% to 50% of the labor force. With the government failing to respond to the natural disasters in these areas, many have resorted to migrating for less volatile work. All Central Asian countries are experiencing similar impacts from inclement weather and an increase in natural disasters. Land degradation, water stress and desertification could continue worsening. In turn, this will lead many people in affected areas to migrate and lead to an increase in poverty. Luckily, Uzbekistan may be paving a way to mitigate the factors leading to climate migration and poverty.

Uzbekistan: Taking the Lead

Experts consider Uzbekistan one of the most water-stressed countries due to its position near the Gobi Desert. Droughts and other extreme weather are leading to limited water resources and land degradation. This impacts the agriculture industry significantly, particularly in impoverished communities. As of 2019, 11% of the population in Uzbekistan lived below the national poverty line. Similar to other Central Asian countries, rural citizens are migrating to urban areas to avoid agriculturally-devastating weather disasters and to better themselves economically. As a result, new figures are estimated to reach 200,000 displaced migrants and climate refugees, more than triple the amount in 2018. However, a recent policy dialogue in Uzbekistan seeks to combat severe weather consequences by accelerating the transition to a green economy.

Uzbekistan may be the first Central Asian country to strive for solutions. As such, it could become a leader in the region to fix the climate migration and poverty issues. In August 2021, the Uzbekistan government launched a series called Green Growth and Climate Change that will continue to accelerate the country’s transition to a green economy. The group includes government representatives, policymakers, environmental experts and civil society members seeking to mitigate the area’s vulnerability to weather events. The Uzbekistan government also outlined its goals and priorities in the Climate Change Strategy 2021-2023. A large portion of this strategy is to mitigate and adapt to the increase in severe weather patterns. Additionally, it underlines the importance of assisting those considering climate migration to make good decisions about whether to stay or move to where they would be less vulnerable.

Latest Suggestions from the World Bank

A Lead Environmental Research team from the World Bank evaluated climate migration and its consequences. Specifically, it used a multi-dimensional modeling approach, looking at three potential severe weather and development scenarios. The results showed that “Without the right planning and support, people migrating from rural areas into cities could be facing new and even more dangerous risks.” These new risks include scarce resources, such as food and housing depending on the area.

The study recommends the following actions to assist climate migration in Central Asia:

  • Lessen climate pressure on individuals and livelihoods, leading to a reduction in overall climate migration.
  • Consider the entire cycle of climate migration (before, during and after migration) to prevent risks that may arise.
  • Invest in studies to improve each country’s understanding of its climate migration trends.

Paving the Way

Uzbekistan is definitely on the right course in drawing attention to severe weather patterns impacting poverty and climate migration in Central Asia. Its government is just beginning to dive into solving these serious problems, but the measures it is taking are encouraging.

– Alex Mauthe
Photo: Flickr

The post Poverty, Natural Disasters and Climate Migration in Central Asia appeared first on The Borgen Project.

USAID’s Programs to Reduce Poverty and Hunger

In September 2021, the White House introduced two of USAID’s new programs to reduce poverty and hunger. USAID, the U.S.’s international development agency, provides aid to countries to support various sectors such as agriculture, trade and human rights. The latest programs of USAID include the Gender Responsive Agricultural Systems Policy (GRASP) and its latest collaboration […]

The post USAID’s Programs to Reduce Poverty and Hunger appeared first on The Borgen Project.

Learn More

Global Supply Chain Issues in the Developing World

More than half of the global population has received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine. The world is slowly recovering from the devastating effects of the virus. However, a serious post-pandemic symptom has emerged: the global supply chain is struggling. While the supply chain affects the whole planet, there is ample evidence of […]

The post Global Supply Chain Issues in the Developing World appeared first on The Borgen Project.

Learn More

The “Great Green Wall” Refugee Camp in Cameroon

Refugees in Northern Cameroon have “planted 360,000 seedlings” since 2018 to combat desertification in the Minawao refugee camp. The refugees grew the “Great Green Wall” with help from their host communities, the U.N. and the Lutheran World Federation (LWF). The Dutch Postcode Lottery funded the project with $2.7 million as part of an initiative to […]

The post The “Great Green Wall” Refugee Camp in Cameroon appeared first on The Borgen Project.

Learn More

The “Great Green Wall” Refugee Camp in Cameroon

Refugees in Northern Cameroon have “planted 360,000 seedlings” since 2018 to combat desertification in the Minawao refugee camp. The refugees grew the “Great Green Wall” with help from their host communities, the U.N. and the Lutheran World Federation (LWF). The Dutch Postcode Lottery funded the project with $2.7 million as part of an initiative to […]

The post The “Great Green Wall” Refugee Camp in Cameroon appeared first on The Borgen Project.

Learn More

End Time Worldwide Missions helps Nigerians Fight Poverty

For the past 10 years, Nigeria-native and missionary Abraham Sunday has used his empathy and deep understanding of poverty to help reduce poverty in Nigeria. He has since extended his work to helping people around the continent. Four years ago, he founded End Time Worldwide Missions to spread Christianity. However, he realized the urgency of […]

The post End Time Worldwide Missions helps Nigerians Fight Poverty appeared first on The Borgen Project.

Learn More

Examining 60 Years of USAID’s Foreign Assistance

On November 3, 2021, the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) celebrated its 60th year of existence. The Foreign Assistance Act of 1961 made the formation of USAID possible. USAID’s creation stems from President John F. Kennedy’s aim to consolidate the foreign assistance work of several organizations into one main agency. Today, USAID operates […]

The post Examining 60 Years of USAID’s Foreign Assistance appeared first on The Borgen Project.

Learn More

Examining 60 Years of USAID’s Foreign Assistance

On November 3, 2021, the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) celebrated its 60th year of existence. The Foreign Assistance Act of 1961 made the formation of USAID possible. USAID’s creation stems from President John F. Kennedy’s aim to consolidate the foreign assistance work of several organizations into one main agency. Today, USAID operates […]

The post Examining 60 Years of USAID’s Foreign Assistance appeared first on The Borgen Project.

Learn More

Rescued Food Market Fights Hunger in Canada

According to the United Nations, almost half of all fruits and vegetables produced worldwide go to waste. The world’s total wasted food “is enough to feed about three billion people.” In the city of Vancouver in Canada, food waste is a rising issue along with food insecurity. The Rescued Food Market aims to tackle hunger […]

The post Rescued Food Market Fights Hunger in Canada appeared first on The Borgen Project.

Learn More

How Shares Uganda Supports Farmers

Many know Uganda, a landlocked country in East Africa, for its conservation of mountain gorillas and agricultural exports of cash crops like coffee, cotton, tea and tobacco. The nation is also home to the highest refugee population in all of Africa. About 76% of citizens reside in rural locations and the agriculture industry is responsible […]

The post How Shares Uganda Supports Farmers appeared first on The Borgen Project.

Learn More

Poverty, Natural Disasters and Climate Migration in Central Asia

About 1% of the world lives in a climate hot zone, causing a concerning rise of climate migration in Central Asia. According to the World Bank, an increase in natural disasters could force 216 million people to migrate within their own countries by 2050. The increased probability of extreme climate patterns and climate migration leads […]

The post Poverty, Natural Disasters and Climate Migration in Central Asia appeared first on The Borgen Project.

Learn More