Tyler Perry
Actor and filmmaker Tyler Perry recently spoke in a public service announcement launched by Feeding America and the Ad Council on Feb. 11. This announcement was part of Feeding America’s national Hunger Prevention campaign in partnership with the Ad Council.

According to KCBD, given his membership of the Feeding America Entertainment Council, Perry would like to mobilize the people of America behind the mission to fight child hunger nationally.

Feeding America, established in the late 1960s, has since become the nation’s leading hunger-relief organization, with a network of 200 food banks and 60,000 poverty relief programs that serve around 46 million Americans every year, as stated on the organization’s website.

In an interview with PR Newswire, CEO of Feeding America Diana Aviv expressed her appreciation of Perry’s contribution to the organization. “By providing a strong voice for children who struggle with hunger, he can help inspire more people to engage with their local food banks and make a true difference in the lives of millions in need,” she said.

By participating in the short video titled “Stop Hunger with Tyler Perry | Hunger Prevention” posted on YouTube by the Ad Council, Perry has joined a network of more than 40 other celebrities, including Scarlett Johansson and Matt Damon, in the fight against hunger with Feeding America. This series of video clips addresses how hunger has a negative impact on children’s development, as well as advocates for ways in which the enormous amount of surplus food wasted every year in the U.S. could help alleviate the situation.

As reported by PR Newswire, “all PSAs will run in advertising time and space entirely donated by the media.” The fact that the Hunger Prevention campaign has received more than $373 million as a result of these PSAs portends even more successes for this program in the future.

“15 million children suffer from hunger in the U.S. and through our newly released PSA, we will continue to raise awareness and provide meals to children and families in need across the country,” said Perry.

Hoa Nguyen

Sources: Look to the Stars, PR Newswire, Feeding America
Photo: Melisa Source

According to the Word Food Programme, around 795 million people globally do not have enough food to lead active lives. Lack of nutrition leads to a number of other health problems among the world’s poor such as disease, stunted growth and even death. Here are three methods that can help prevent hunger:

1. Invest in Agriculture

Agricultural investment prevents hunger in the long and short term because it allows the poor to become more independent. Most of the world’s poor live in rural areas where agriculture is the source of income and food.

More investment is needed for programs that provide farmers with land incentives, train them on how to maximize their produce and teach them when and what to plant throughout the year.

Through such programs, farmers will not only be able to feed their family but also sell their harvests for profits.

In turn, parents can invest in their children’s education and end the generational cycle of poverty. This financial stability could also mean less pressure on parents to force their daughters into early marriage.

2. Financial Planning

With unpredictable climate and political changes in developing countries, financial planning acts as a safety net in case of drought, famine or war.

Financial security gives families a head start when they are displaced due to conflict and also helps prevent hunger during times of drought.

Training farmers on how to save and invest their money also allows them to invest in machinery and livestock to maximize their productivity and prevent malnutrition.

3. Focus on Women

Empowering women by educating them on agriculture and giving them the resources to provide for their families will make households mores sustainable. The tradition of gender inequality is what makes hunger inheritable in developing countries.

Each year, around 19 million children are born underweight because their mothers were not adequately nourished during pregnancy. More often than not, malnutrition continues through infancy because their mother’s breast milk does not provide enough nutrients.

In addition, weak immune systems due to malnutrition allow the transmission of HIV/AIDS from mother to child. HIV/AIDS treatments and prenatal health care ensure the birth of healthy babies.

A program combining these three methods to prevent hunger would ensure impoverished communities are able to sustain healthy lives and break the cycle of poverty and hunger.

Marie Helene Ngom

Sources: WFP, AIDSInfo
Picture: Google Images