Our Google guru throws at us the meaning of hunger
Noun : “ A feeling of discomfort or weakness caused by lack of food, coupled with the desire to eat”
Verb : “ Have a strong desire or craving for “ . “ feel or suffer hunger through lack of food”
Some of us Live to eat and some eat to live. But they are substantial number of us for whom hunger is a living reality. Around the world Hunger has been a reeling crisis/issue/problem ever since time memorial.
In history of mankind nations of the world has witnessed prolonged periods of hunger due to variety of reasons cited – spreading of life threatening diseases, war, adverse weather conditions or adverse political scenarios. The farming shift from food crops to cash crops have also been instrumental in the hunger crisis.
While we have advanced technologically in food production, which should have addressed the issue of shortage in food available to the masses, but in fact with the alarming rise in income divide in our society it has resulted in the worsening of the hunger crisis. Unprecedented rise in food prices has made it more difficult for middle and lower income class to afford basic FOOD.
There have been several attempts and movements to address hunger crisis globally, after the World War II, i.e.1960’s “Freedom of Hunger Campaign”, which was mainly to create awareness and attract attention. In 1974 at the World Food Conference, a pledge was taken that no child or family should go hungry to bed, Basic Income, Food Bank, Soup Kitchen and various other initiatives were undertaken worldwide to address this crisis.
Despite the tremendous economic & technological growth seen in our country ‘India’ where our. GDP has grown 4.5 times over the past two to three decades and food production has grown by nearly 2 times the over the decades, but still we are struggling to address this issue and are unable to provide the basic food availability to many families across the length and breadth of the country. As per FAO in a report ‘The State of Food Security and Nutrition in the World, 2017” report, 190.7 million people are undernourished in India. By this measure 14.5% of our population is undernourished. This makes India the largest in the number of hungry people in the world.
Our countries next generation consists of alarmingly high number of underweight children under the age of five, this kind of malnutrition cases leads to stunted growth and higher cases of minor deaths.
Government of India and many NGO’s are working at grass root level, we can see many programs being rolled out aiming to address marginalised sections of society via schemes like mid-day meals in schools, food fortification, rationed public distribution system, Annaporna Scheme (1999–2000) food to senior citizen covered under National Old Age Pension Scheme (NOAPS).
‘Wishes and Blessings’ is an NGO based in New Delhi established in 2014 by Dr Geeentaji Chopra, who work various causes i.e. Accessible Education, Build a Dream, Food For all, Healthier Lives, Skill it Up, Be Spoke, Airtel Delhi Half Marathon, they have formal partnerships with over 12 organisations across India. From sponsoring the education of over 150 children, providing relief in SOS situations to serving three daily meals to 225 people, building toilets for the elderly, facilitating the mass marriage of 14 underprivileged girls and running day care centers for street children, they have been able to make a meaningful impact on several lives.
They run a project called DAILY MEALS, under this with the help of donors, they serve three nutritious meals a day to the residents in their shelter homes. Please click on the link above for more information, also one could get in touch @ [email protected].
Let’s all pitch in to do what we can.
- ‘KNOW YOUR WORLD: FACTS ABOUT HUNGER AND POVERTY’ Nov 2017, Accessed on 28/05/2019 < http://www.thp.org/knowledge-center/know-your-world-facts-about-hunger-poverty>
- ‘Hunger in India” Accessed on 28/05/2017 < https://www.indiafoodbanking.org/hunger>
Source & Bibliography:
- Sophia Rogers, 2015, The Crisis that is World Hunger and the History Behind It.
- FAO, IFAD, UNICEF, WFP and WHO. 2017.
- The State of Food Security and Nutrition in the World 2017.
- Building resilience for peace and food security. 2017
- Rome, FAO.