Sunday, October 16

Dying for Food

Food is available to me. 

Readily. I can pick up the phone and order for delivery. I can access the Internet and order online. I can pop into one of the hundreds of convenience stores in my area alone and pick up snacks, like chocolate, biscuits and lollies.

I shop for groceries at least once a week. And I usually buy way too much. And as soon as something expires, I throw it away. I waste. I don't finish my meals at restaurants, they are far too big. I throw out anything I can't give to someone and I donate tins of food to the hungry. ( when I was younger, now I donate to the WFP and other funds helping Africa online)

I have no understanding of the words I'm starving. We (the lucky ones) use that term when were hungry. And I often look into the fridge and find nothing that I wish to eat at that moment.

When I was young and living in South Africa, I had hot and cold clean running water AND electricity AND a roof over my head AND access to medicine. I had plenty of food, my childhood memories are of favourite meals and treats.

I have never experienced a single day without a meal - unless it was my choice. I have never woken up hungry, never gone to sleep hungry and never walked (or crawled, or swam or endangered my life) for kilometres in search of food.

I have never sucked on a seed to try and satiate a starving child or gone without a spoonful of porridge or rice, so someone else can be less hungry, less malnourished, less likely to die within the next day or so.

The WFP is providing nuritional food products which don't always have to be mixed with water, because the access to clean water fit for drinking is limited in some parts of Africa and in other countries all over the world. There are millions of people in conflict, experiencing war, prevented by terrorists/war lords/ misgoverned governments or poverty - to have access to two things which are our basic rights, food and water.

The world produces enough food to feed everyone. World agriculture produces 17 percent more calories per person today than it did 30 years ago, despite a 70 percent population increase. This is enough to provide everyone in the world with at least 2,720 kilocalories (kcal)  per person per day (FAO 2002, p.9).  The principal problem is that many people in the world do not have sufficient land to grow, or income to purchase, enough food.  

Africa is still paying a world debt. Often people who need the resources, who need to help their dying families, communities and cattle cannot access the food needed to keep them alive. Not satiated, just simply alive. I have read stories of people who walked for 25 days to get aid. I have seen pictures of children crawling, dying just to get help.

Today is World Food Day (16th October) The FAO (whose headquarters are in Rome) have a motto “fiat panis” (let there be bread. Today is Blog Action Day with the topic of food to raise awareness of our universal relationship with food. To those without, to those who struggle with food choices, to those who eat too much or too little.

This post is in honour of all those who are dying for food. While I, the lucky one, have an abundance of food choices and access to food 24/7. I know that there are millions of people who have never had a pizza delivered to their home. Or have not been able to afford a chocolate bar. And this is to those people who have never seen a supermarket, convenience store, farmers market and would probably be stunned by so much abundance and choice.

I can, will and do donate. I want my funds to help educate, provide water and food to promote a healthy lifestyle and encourage a happy, healthy future for people who lose everything, risk everything on a constant basis while I am the lucky one.

This video was taken in 2008 of footage of starving and dying children in Africa. I hope that WFP and their nutritional products and our donations from afar will help children to live.


  1. The world is a better place for having you care about it. Your words provoke thought, and action.x