Hungry for a Solution


Hunger is a major issue in the world, despite the fact that there is enough food produced on the planet to feed over 7 billion people. (Photo courtesy of Pixabay)

Hunger is a problem that has been devouring countries around the world for centuries. Food insecurity is defined as being unable to consistently access or afford adequate food. Unfortunately, this issue affects one in every seven people in the world. It is widely believed that this issue is something that has always been around and will continue to affect our world, despite the fact that there is enough food in the world to feed the entire global population. Living in a country with so many opportunities, we are fortunate enough to have the resources to fight against world hunger. However, we need to focus our resources on helping people in our own country.

“World hunger is very important. We are so fortunate to live in a country where we have access to food at the drop of a hat. There are so many people around the world who are starving and dying. You need to have fat, muscle, and energy in your body to live, and without food, that isn’t possible. If we actually worked more towards solving hunger as a country, I think we could make a huge impact,” says sophomore Dorothy Campbell.

Starvation can kill a human in about three weeks; this is solely based on lack of food, without the consideration that many diseases will likely develop before the point of starvation. Hunger often leads to malaria, measles, pneumonia, and diarrhea. Many diseases that are treatable and uncommon in the U.S. are often life-threatening and incurable in third world countries. About 767 million people live on less than $1.90 a day, which makes it nearly impossible for many people to afford food, let alone medical treatment.

“It is so important that people understand how privileged we are compared to many people in the world. We don’t have to worry about so much. If people knew all the facts about world hunger, it would make a big impact. Being educated on something is a huge part of…being part of the solution,” says freshman Abby McDonald.

Hunger is a vicious cycle that affects parents, who tend to pass the problem on to their children. Malnutrition is especially common in children. About 34 million children around the world suffer from malnutrition, and it causes about half of the deaths of children under five. Developmentally, having enough food and nutrition is most important to a child in their first 100 days of being alive. If hunger is not stopped early on, it can destroy a child’s life.

“We have a lot of hungry people and not a lot of help for them. I think that people often pretend like they care but don’t actually take action to help solve the problem. There are so many opportunities around us, even at Brashier, where we can help provide food for people who need it,” says sophomore Sophia Dalby.

Spreading awareness and knowledge of world hunger can be one of the most beneficial methods for securing a solution. In our society, it is common to talk about hunger, but not in a way that is serious or helpful. Many people don’t understand the effect true hunger can have on one’s body and life. Sharing knowledge about world hunger is the first step to eliminating it, and we have so many opportunities to do so.

“I definitely think that it’s good we talk about world hunger as much as possible, using places like social media platforms and settings like beauty pageants. I don’t know if it actually has helped hungry people, but I believe that spreading awareness will encourage more aid to the food insecure in the future,” says Campbell.

Model United Nations, is a South Carolina program that teaches students to resolve world problems in a civil and respectful way. Each year students complete a hunger simulation. The students become representatives from each country who receive slices of bread symbolizing their hunger levels and food availability. Countries with immense hunger problems in their population are given a single slice, while countries with excessive food supply are given multiple loaves. The United States receives fifteen full loaves of bread. This simulation demonstrates the extreme abundance of food in the U.S., despite the fact that there are people who face hunger all around us.

“Each year, we put on the hunger simulation because one of the key components of Model UN is to give students a better understanding of global society and life. Our students cannot learn accurately about different societies and issues unless we give them the proper context. Part of that context is the availability of resources–whether that is food or something else–in the different countries that they are learning about. It helps to make them aware of issues…to be a part of the solution,” says SC YMCA Youth in Government program director Ian Rutledge.

We must take action to feed the innocent people who are dying every day due to preventable concerns. The issue of world hunger can easily seem too large to handle, with about 815 million people going hungry each day. However, there are simple ways we can support ending hunger without traveling around the world to poverty-stricken areas or donating thousands of dollars to food organizations. For instance, supporting farms and eating clean are simple ways to slightly adjust our daily routines and help others in need. Donating food to local food banks, volunteering in soup kitchens, and giving money to organizations are also ways we can help our community, and, eventually, beyond.

“There are so many organizations that do such an amazing job of helping people in the community. It can be hard to directly help people all the way in places like Africa, but there are simple ways to help out the people in our community. Donating to food drives and volunteering at places like God’s Pantry are really easy ways to help with a large problem,” says McDonald.