hunger in developing countries
Hunger in developing countries is one of the most significant hindrances to poverty reduction and global development around the world. Below are five facts about hunger in developing countries that everyone should know.

  1. Hunger is one of the most widespread problems across the globe.

    One in nine people globally is currently undernourished. Of these 795 million people, 98% live in developing countries. This means that hunger in developing countries represents one of the most significant issues facing the developing world and development assistance programs.

  2. Hunger in developing countries is not just concentrated on Africa.

    While the population of Sub-Saharan Africa has the highest percentage of undernourished people, Asia is home to the most hunger people in the world. Nearly 70% of the world’s hungry live in underdeveloped countries within Asia.

  3. Women and children are most negatively impacted.

    Every ten seconds a child dies of malnutrition, making up 45% of all child deaths under age five in developing countries. Those who do survive are often forced to go to school hungry, which hinders their ability to grow and learn and puts them behind in school. Hunger largely contributes to many underdeveloped countries’ educational gaps.

  4. Rural farmers experience the highest rates of undernutrition.

    Three-quarters of the world’s hungry live in rural areas. Most are low-income farmers whose lands are plagued by frequent natural disasters, making them one of the world’s most vulnerable populations.

  5. It is not completely out of reach.

    In July 2014 the heads of the African state department committed to ending hunger in Africa by 2025. To achieve this admirable goal, the country has committed to investing in agriculture and improving peace and stability in the region. Both of these actions have been found to have significant positive impacts on hunger-reduction. Hefty progress has already been made throughout the world — nutrition improved for 26 million people between 2011 and 2013 alone.

Hunger in developing countries is a detrimental hurdle to effective growth. The fight against global hunger is essential; ending hunger in developing countries could bring the world one step closer towards eliminating global poverty and sparking growth in much of the developing world.

Sara Christensen


Education in PalestineWhile issues that adversely affect education are yet to be fully resolved, programs that benefit education in Palestine show promise for creating a positive, lasting impact on the country. Here are five facts about education in Palestine:

  1. Literacy rates in Palestine are extremely high—even when compared to developed countries. According to the most recent data published in 2014, Palestine has a 96.3 percent literacy rate. The UNDP states that this percentage is, “higher than that of the UNDP 2014 HDI ‘high human development’ category average.” With the constant turmoil and poverty within the Gaza Strip and West Bank, these statistics may come as a surprise to many. Ninety-four percent of women in Palestine are literate (compared to 98.4 percent of men). This is a huge improvement from 1995, when less than 80 percent of women could read and write.
  2. In 2013, only 9.4 percent of children did not complete any level of education in Palestine. The UNDP states that dropout rates among schoolchildren have declined significantly in recent years. Data shows the average amount of schooling for Palestinian children is close to nine years.
  3. Poor infrastructure and lack of funding are major barriers to quality education in Palestine. Over 280 schools were damaged in Gaza due to the 51-day conflict between Israel and Palestine in 2014. According to UNICEF, the infrastructure problem has yet to be fully resolved largely due to sanctions on the transport of certain construction materials. In addition to infrastructure damage, overcrowding presents a major challenge to the Palestinian education system. Overcrowded schools impede upon the quality of education that children receive on a daily basis.
  4. The United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) is working to improve education within the West Bank and the Gaza Strip. While the West Bank offers adequate primary education, the UNRWA is working to improve secondary education within the area. In the Gaza Strip, the agency is expanding upon educational programs as well as out-of-school initiatives.
  5. The Palestine Children’s Relief Fund’s “Gaza Educational Initiative” is raising money to support education efforts in the region. Following the 2014 bombings within the West Bank, PCRF started a fund to help provide tutoring and extra education services to affected children. Programs like this and efforts made by the U.N. are helping Palestinian kids achieve higher education despite the unstable state of their home environments.

U.S. foreign aid to Palestine is an incredibly contentious topic in current politics. However, putting past political disagreements for the sake of education is crucial for Palestinian children. Educating younger generations of children can provide hope for less poverty, radicalization and violence within the community.

Saroja Koneru

Photo: Flickr