A world without hunger

Monday, September 25th 2006
My name is Sophea, I am the daughter of a coffee farmer in Mexico, the hurricanes that devastated New Orleans, also made a significant amount of damage on our farm. Our beans were immensely damaged and this past crop was entirely wiped out. Since the disaster I have had to start working at a textile company 2 hours from my home, each week my $10 paycheck gets sent back to my family, all struggling to survive.

This was just one of the cards that I had collected from the “Poverty Banquet” tonight. A real eye opener to the fact that not only across the globe in third world nations, but as well as in our own country, people unfortunately are starving from the misplaced distribution of goods.As we entered the conference room, each participant was handed a randomly drawn card, on this little 3×3 card was written your new persona, your new life. Your stars, par say. The 270 people that were in attendance were split into 3 groups according to the card that was handed to us as we entered. Our fate was drawn, and now, we would get to watch as 15% of the population sat at finely decorated tables and served a three course meal on silver lined plates. These people were those of the high income a mere 15 percent of the worlds population, a small percent that consumes nearly 70 percent of the worlds goods. A group that is plagued with obesity and heart disease, brought on by one cause; over eating.

Another 30% sat at long tables, with two serving trays set at the center, one with rice, another with beans, this population group was the lower income group. Those families that go from meal to meal, working mediocre jobs just to put food on the table each day. One slight bump in the road could easily send one from this group into poverty.

The rest, are those living at or below the poverty line (think $1 per day). These people sat on the floor, followed by standing in a large line, men first of course, waiting to receive a small half filled bowl of rice. This one server of rice did not make its way far into the group, and many of the women and children went hungry. This group makes up 55% of the worlds population. A group of people that due to causes beyond their ability to control, has placed them in a region plagued with AID’s and little education. Parents do not expect their children to live past the age of 10, their bodies become so starved that when they do receive food, their body is unable to absorb its nutrients.One fact that struck me hard was:

One child dies of starvation every five seconds. That during the time it took me to just get this far into this post, that over 200 children have died.
I remember as a child, my parents would pull the same line that every parent in America would when a child would refuse to clean their plate “there are children starving around the world, now eat it.” Which was soon followed by the snotty retort, of “why don’t you just mail this to them then?”

Looking back, I wish that I had had that mind frame a bit reversed. I wish that I would have thought that instead of shouting back a retort that would end with me back in my room writing I will eat everything on my plate, nor will I talk back to my parents. That, I instead would have thought of all of the children that go hungry in my neighborhood alone, all of the children that go to school on an empty stomach. And instead of being oh so grateful that I had more than enough, that I could sneak down and grab a cookie at 2am afraid of feeling the pains of not surviving until morning due to ‘extreme hunger’. But instead that I would have opened my arms and invited them over for meals… I want to make a difference, I want to eradicate this world of the hungry souls that sit on the side of the road as you pass by in your brand new truck thinking that they are from some other class, or that the governments job is to feed them, and not one’s own responsibility. Why can’t we just look at the soul of one plagued with hunger and for even just one day, donate your meals to them?