For Immediate Release
Anti-Hunger Groups Unveil Plan to Cut Hunger
WASHINGTON - As part of World Food Day celebrations today, Bread for the World
and other groups in the National Anti-Hunger Organizations (NAHO)
coalition released A Blueprint to End Hunger, a plan that highlights
critical steps to help families achieve food security.
"Food prices soared 7.5 percent over the past year and near record
numbers of people were enrolling in our social safety nets even before
the economic meltdown," said Bread for the World President Rev. David
Beckmann. "Right now our nation needs this new map to help navigate our
way out of hunger."
The critical needs highlighted in the A Blueprint to End Hunger include:
- an adequate minimum wage that, like the one a generation ago, lifts a small family out of poverty;
- private and public sector provision of jobs and job training;
- strategies to create and increase assets among working families;
- social insurance protection for unemployed and retired persons; and
- child care, refundable tax credits, nutrition assistance, and
health insurance that reward work of families trying to make ends meet.
"The blueprint is not just about more money," said Rev. Beckmann.
"It's about better public policies and stronger action in all areas of
our society to finally eradicate hunger. It's about local groups,
including faith communities, making the federal nutrition programs
fully effective on the ground. And this year, it's about making
candidates understand the need to end hunger."
For years, faith-based organizations have been directly working to
end hunger in the United States - for examples, they operate the
majority of the country's soup kitchens and feeding programs. "If
Christians played a stronger role in advocating for better policies, we
could quickly become the driving force toward ending hunger everywhere.
The Bible says that the path to abundance is to 'offer your food to the
hungry and satisfy the needs of the afflicted.' The blueprint offers
many ways to help us pursue that path," Rev. Beckmann said.
Today, more than 35 million Americans, including more than 12
million children, struggle to put food on the table. The cost of food,
fuel, and healthcare is skyrocketing, and high rates of unemployment
continue. The number of households participating in the Supplemental
Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP, formerly the Food Stamp Program)
has increased by nearly 10 percent in the past year.
U.S. food banks are overburdened, with an estimated 20 percent
increase in the number of people requesting food assistance over the
A copy of Blueprint to End Hunger can be downloaded at http://www.bread.org/learn/us-hunger-issues/national-anti-hunger.html