The public is welcome to attend the upcoming annual Bread for the World Hunger Advocacy Workshop being held on Sat., May 4 from 8:30 AM to Noon at Pittsburgh Theological Seminary in the John Knox Room (616 N. Highland Avenue in East Liberty). The theme this year is based on the international focus of this year’s Bread for the World Offering of Letters: Better Nutrition, Better Tomorrow.
This year’s event will feature Margaret Tran, Regional Organizer for Bread for the World. Those gathered will honor Sen. Robert Casey for his leadership in fostering improved public policy for food security at home and abroad. Additional information will be provided by local speakers on the importance of nutrition in the development of children and the programs assisting children at home and around the world. The process for conducting an offering of letters will be shared by a local panel of experienced advocates.
Over the past several decades, the world—with a strong commitment from the United States—has made great progress toward ending hunger by promoting global nutrition programs. Hunger and poverty rates have been cut nearly in half during the past 30 years. In countries such as Ghana and Honduras, stunting—when a child does not grow and develop properly because of chronic malnutrition—has been reduced by nearly one-third in approximately 10 years.
The tools to move toward our goal of ending hunger are available. Good nutrition during the 1,000-day period from the beginning of a woman’s pregnancy to her child’s second birthday is critical to a child’s health and future well-being.
We can care for one another and speak out for those in need. Bread for the World’s 2019 Offering of Letters: Better Nutrition, Better Tomorrow urges our government to accelerate progress toward ending hunger by increasing funding for global child nutrition programs.
Today, nearly 821 million people in the world—11 percent of the world’s population—remain hungry. One in 4 of the world’s children are affected by stunting, resulting in irreversible life consequences. Countries in Central America, South Asia, and Sub-Saharan Africa are disproportionately affected. Almost half of all child deaths worldwide are linked to malnutrition.
We have a collective voice to urge Congress to pass legislation that will accelerate progress on global nutrition. To do that, voters must scale up efforts to improve access to nutritious foods, vitamins and minerals, clean water and sanitation, promotion of breastfeeding, and treatment for severe malnutrition.
Current funding is not enough to reach global nutrition goals, and powerful political forces are pushing to curtail poverty-focused assistance. All children deserve the opportunity to live a healthy life and reach their full potential.
We invite you to join us in making this opportunity a reality! Urge Congress to support a global initiative to accelerate progress on nutrition and pass legislation to establish a new, scaled-up approach to global nutrition. Passage of a bill or resolution will strengthen U.S. commitment to global child nutrition and will lead other countries to join in the global effort to end hunger. Urge them to protect and increase funding for global nutrition programs. Also, at the same time, our government through the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) in particular—can and should strengthen its capacity to address malnutrition.
The hunger advocacy workshop is hosted by the SW PA Bread for the World Team. To register for the free workshop, go to http://bit.ly/breadworkshop 2019. For more information, contact me at 412-780-5118.
By Joyce Rothermel, co-chair of the SW PA Bread for the World Team
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