Feeling Hungry?

Ahead of World Food Day (16 October), Tearfund is calling on the UK government to find new money to help some of the poorest people in the world adapt to climate change:

The animation is based on the real-life experiences of farmers in some of the world’s poorest communities.  “When the weather is good, I have produce to sell. But this year the harvest wasn’t good because of the flash floods,” says Silas Ndayisaba, a farmer from Rwanda. “The weather is less predictable and the drought means that we have a lot less food.”

This film is a call to action is for the UK public to join Tearfund’s campaign and ask Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, Ed Davey, to champion a shipping levy that could help reduce food prices and help poor communities feed themselves.“Climate change is making people hungry,” says Tearfund’s Head of Campaigns, Ben Niblett. “The UK church has an opportunity to speak up for justice, as the Bible tells us to, and tell our governments to stop stalling and do something for the millions of people who go to bed hungry each night all over the world.”

Visit www.tearfund.org/hunger to take action and read Tearfund’s report Hope on the Horizon: Feeding the World in a Changing Climate.

2 Replies to “Feeling Hungry?”

  1. And there I was thinking that hunger in Africa and elsewhere was caused by war, greed, overpopulation and all sorts of other human behaviour that the semitic monotheisms once called “sin” (and perhaps some of them still do). But no. It’s climate change, and we are all let off the hook (since no one knows how much of it is caused by urbanisation and how much is just how the biosphere works).

    I’m assuming that no one has offered Silas a sum of money to relocate his farm to somewhere that doesn’t flood. I’m assuming that Silas was right to stick with farming and not seek an urban lifestyle. But I don’t know, and I don’t think Ben sees it as his job to tell me. Indeed, Ben ducks the issue of what’s to be done if Silas’s government diverts the funds – really just earmarked taxation – to some corrupt end of its own. Do we then invade? or let Silas and his family starve? Does religion have anything to say about these questions? (Other than that Moses, Jesus and Mohammed all lived at a time when they couldn’t possibly have heard of starving African farmers, and that presumably God knew what He was doing sending them to us when He did.)

  2. Good questions! The Bible has a lot to say about loving your neighbour, and makes it clear that includes sharing what you have with people who aren’t exactly like you. Which leads Tearfund to climate change, because the poor communities we work with are telling us how there are more floods, more droughts, less reliable rain, and less food as a result. But they’re also telling us that poor people are not helpless victims, they can do a lot to adapt and cope with climate change, like changing the crops they plant – for which a small amount of outside money is helpful to buy seed and training, for example.

    So we want the world’s governments to keep their promise to provide $100 billion to help poor communities cope with climate change and find cleaner ways to develop, and we think a carbon levy on shipping is a great way to start to find the money. We think the international Green Climate Fund, which is already set up, is a good practical way to make sure it’s spent well and gets to people who need it, and prevents national governments grabbing it for other things.

    And corruption? Please take a look at our Unearth the Truth campaign http://www.tearfund.org/unearth and help us tackle that too.

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