Few things hurt more than to put your child to bed without knowing whether you can give it food tomorrow. This is the reality for many parents, the world over. More than half of those suffering from starvation today are children. They are all someone’s son, someone’s daughter. One cannot begin to imagine what it does to a parent to not know whether you can feed your child tomorrow or not.
That is why the Church, through Caritas, works to ensure that all children have food, and that families will make enough to provide for themselves every single day. Thousands of Caritas employees and volunteers see the suffering that a lack of food brings, every day. We want to help ease that suffering, to do something about it. And we do. But we can do so much more if we all work together.
Together we can help thousands of farmers in Zambia and the Congo grow food for their families. Together we can teach aquaculture to youngsters in the Colombian countryside. Together, we can make sure a Venezuelan mother can feed her child as night comes.
Showing compassion towards one’s neighbors is a big part of the Christian faith. Pope Francis has called Caritas “the heart of the Catholic Church.” It is a fitting image, showing how Caritas fills the entire Church with life. But, keeping that beating heart strong requires your continued support. That is why we ask you to support the work Caritas does to give families all over the world food and a future filled with human dignity.
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Fall campaign 2019: Give a gift to fill a stomach
This is the third year in a row that the number of people starving globally has increased. However: Your help can make a difference!
Every day mothers and fathers around the world struggle to feed their children. 821 million children and adults suffer from starvation, while almost two billion live in a state of periodic food shortages. Every night one out of nine people go to bed on an empty stomach.
Food for the future
Correct nutrition throughout the first 1000 days of a child’s life is essential for it’s development and future. Malnutrition during this period can have consequences for the baby’s development, both physical and mental, that last a lifetime. Undernutrition or malnutrition cause not only suffering and bad health. It also causes underdevelopment in education and the workforce. That is why the money raised during this year’s Fall campaign go to the war against hunger.
- Making sure that children are properly fed is among our most important tasks. It allows them to develop normally, stay focused in school and makes it more likely that they’ll realize their dreams for the future, Martha Rubiano Skretteberg, Secretary-General of Caritas Norway, said.
Sustainable development goal 2
Helping to win the war against starvation and poverty is the main goal of Caritas Norway’s work abroad. However, things are moving in the wrong direction. For the third year in a row, 2018 saw the number of people suffering from starvation and malnutrition rise. Most of those starving today live in rural areas, and depend on farming for their livelihoods. That is why Caritas believes climate-smart agriculture is a key solution to the question of how to eradicate hunger.
- Caritas teaches farmers how they can grow food more efficiently, even though conflicts and climate change worsen the conditions for agriculture in their countries. Furthermore: Our projects give both children and their parents jobs that will make it easier for them to feed themselves, Skretteberg said.
Climate-smart agricultural training
Through our development programs, families are taught how to increase the amount of food they get from each crop, even in a time of climate change. They are trained in the use of resilient seeds and new ways of growing food. In some countries, we have also launched aqua culture programs, to increase people’s access to cheap proteins and to give them a greater chance of making a living wage. We also seek to increase small-scale farmers’ access to markets where they can sell the food they don’t have any use for. Most families who participate in our programs go from having one meal per day to three. With the support of Norad and our donors we help 58.000 families in Niger, Mali, DR Congo, Zambia, Uganda, Colombia and Sri Lanka.
Norway increases its effort to combat hunger
- Caritas has advocated for an increased effort to combat hunger, through increasing the budget for agricultural aid, for many years. We are therefore very happy that the current government has published a new program for how Norway wants to help contribute to eradicating hunger. An increased focus on food security has been something we have wanted for a long time. However, this program needs to be followed by increased appropriations. We expect that the share of the development money going to food security and agriculture will increase when the proposed national budget for 2020 is released, Skretteberg said.
The money Norway gives to agricultural development is approximately 3-4 percent of the total development budget, according to FAFO. If we are to ever combat hunger, everyone must contribute.
- Our priority is helping people help themselves. Through our programs, small-scale farmers are made able to feed themselves. Your gift can give families like yours a new future. Thank you for your support, Martha Skretteberg said.