Nada Shawish is Communications Specialist at Islamic Relief USA.
Hunger is a pretty obvious global problem that most of us are well aware of. But how often do you do something about it? Maybe because such a big problem, we assume, only calls for even bigger solutions—solutions, we also assume, that are just too big for any one person to tackle. Initiatives only work if you get involved in them—and Oct. 16 is World Food Day.
And this World Food Day, I’ve put together some doable to-dos that not only combat hunger, but that will also improve your world—and your day.
Do these with me, and stay full today, my brethren—you may make the world a little more full too.
1. Eat out.
Yes. I said it. Go to a restaurant and have lunch, dinner, and snack … Yes, there’s a catch. Don’t just eat anywhere. World Central Kitchen has teamed up with OpenTable to ask hungry patrons: “Are you hungry to change the world?” They’re tasking us to make reservations at a participating restaurant—and go eat.
10% of your bill today at any participating restaurant will support World Central Kitchen’s “Smart Solutions to Hunger and Poverty projects”.
2. Donate your social media feed.
Dedicate you posts today to hunger awareness. Don’t just talk about how hunger is a problem. Spread solutions! The Islamic Relief USA team has created these ready-to-go sharables to help get you started today—in-depth knowledge about hunger needs to be shared if we ever expect to be on the same page with real, sustainable solutions. Here are some examples:
RT to tell leaders, it’s time to act to #EndHunger & we start by better supporting our farmers #WFD16 @IslamicRelief
Buy local and in season for fair food in a fair climate for farmers and families #WFD16 @IslamicRelief
The difference between dessert and a desert? One is a food & and the other is when food is hard to find where you live #WFD16 @IslamicRelief
There is nothing so satisfying than to eat from your own garden, and better for the environment #WFD16 @islamicrelief
925,000,000 people hungry + 1,300,000,000 TONS of food wasted #WFD16 @islamicrelief Limit portions, share meals, innovate cooking
1/3 of all the food we buy we throw away. Reducing food waste begins at home #WFD16 @Islamicrelief
You can’t build a peaceful world on empty stomachs and human misery #Endhunger #WFD16 @Islamicrelief
4. Keep your friends close, and your farmers closer.
“What makes a farmer’s market such a special place is that you’re actually creating community around food.” –Bryant Terry
Buying local and in season isn’t just good for your health. It’s good for the environment. It reduces waste by buying directly from farmers. It supports local economies. It helps promote livelihoods in rural areas.
Local Harvest does the hard work for you. You can easily find a farmer’s market in your area here
5. Emergency food aid ensures people don’t starve right now.
Unfortunately, beating hunger long-term is taking time. But you can make sure that someone in the world doesn’t succumb to hunger today. There are many emergency food programs that are sending vital food aid to families all over the world. There are also food programs ensuring fellow Americans don’t starve to death in impoverished communities across the United States.
Islamic Relief USA tackles hunger and poverty in nearly 40 countries with sustainable projects in livelihood cultivation for local farmers and small-businesses, and emergency food aid. Any support you give will go a long way.
C.A.S.E. (Communities Against Starvation Everywhere) is a social enterprise that is tackling the hunger issue. They offer a line of healthy snack bars that serve a greater purpose. When you purchase a bar through them, they match your purchase and donate another bar to a food program of your choice.
Feeding America is a nationwide network of food banks that secures and distributes meals throughout the United States. Find a food bank that you can support in your area with in-kind donations. You can even volunteer your time.
On World Food Day, be full: Full of love, sharing, thoughtfulness, empathy and compassion. Most importantly, do the little things that count today to end hunger.
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