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12 Shocking Facts About Hunger in the Philippines
The Philippines is an archipelagic country of more than 7,000 islands located in Southeast Asia in the Pacific Ocean. Hunger is a very serious problem in the Philippines, affecting a large percentage of the population and causing many serious health concerns. Here are 12 shocking facts about hunger in the Philippines.

12 Shocking Facts About Hunger in the Philippines

  1. More than 33 percent of Filipino children suffer from malnutrition due to hunger problems in the Philippines. The problems with hunger and resulting malnutrition have long-term negative effects on children’s health.
  2. Out of the countries that make up the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), the Philippines has one of the highest hunger severities. The only country facing a worse hunger situation in the ASEAN is Indonesia.
  3. The most recent Global Hunger Index (GHI) calculated that the Philippines ranks 69 out of 113 countries with a GHI of 20.2. Factors such as undernourishment and health statistics such as weight and mortality rates, and particularly with children, determine the GHI for a country. The higher the GHI value, the more serious the hunger situation is. A GHI value of zero indicates no undernourishment in the population. The Philippines’ high ranking displays the country’s serious struggles with hunger.
  4. With a GHI of 20.2, the Philippines has one of the most serious scores on the GHI scale. However, this score does not place the country into an alarming category. This shows that while the situation is serious, it is not unsalvageable.
  5. There are approximately 520 million malnourished people in the world. The Philippines has amongst the highest number of citizens suffering from malnourishment. The Asian region, in general, has an extremely high malnourishment rate, which includes the islands of the Philippines.
  6. During recent years, effective results against malnourishment in the Philippines have gone down. The high rate and stagnant poverty make it difficult to find positive outcomes for this problem.
  7. High rates of hunger and malnourishment in the Philippines are primarily due to high food costs and a large low-income population. Additionally, the government lacks focus on addressing the problems associated with hunger, such as regional agricultural laws. The Philippines has passed some bills to reduce the hunger problem including the Philippine Food Fortification Act of 2000. This law mandates “fortifying with essential micronutrients staple food items like rice, flour, oil, and sugar.”
  8. The current strategy for addressing malnutrition in the Philippines is the Philippine Plan of Action for Nutrition (PPAN). This initiative has promoted many recent laws and bills. These laws address solving the malnutrition problem in the Philippines on specific levels or issues such as aid and security to small businesses, farmers and fishermen.
  9. The Duterte administration that currently runs the Philippines garnered an increase in foreign investments of 43.5 percent in 2018. While this brings in more money for the Philippines, a significant proportion goes toward building skyscrapers and big business centers, rather than providing methods to increase the sustainable food supply for the poor. A shift toward fixing hunger needs to become the primary focus in order to begin solving the hunger and health problems of the population.
  10. The organization Rise Against Hunger has been fighting hunger in the Philippines since 2011. Rise Against Hunger coordinates the distribution of food and aid to the most susceptible regions around the world. Rise Against Hunger hopes to end hunger in the Philippines and other countries by 2030.
  11. Feed the Children is another organization that strives to improve the lives of Filipino citizens since 1984. Feed the Children hopes to meet the immediate and long-term needs of children and their families. One of its main focuses is providing individuals with food, nutrition and clean water. It has been able to reach approximately 38 communities.
  12. Action Against Hunger has also worked in the Philippines since 2000 with a focus on humanitarian needs. It specifically looks at needs stemming from physical and emotional issues resulting from natural disasters and their consequences on family and living. In 2018, it was able to help 302,014 people with their programs of nutrition and health, food security and water sanitation.

This concludes the 12 shocking facts about hunger in the Philippines. The country has made small improvements, but there is still a long way to go. Many organizations are doing impactful work to bring real change to the Philippines. However, there are other ways to help, such as contacting congressional leaders or making a donation to one of the organizations mentioned.

Haley Saffren
Photo: Flickr

Rising World HungerAccording to a recent report regarding world hunger trends in 2018, titled “The State of Food Security and Nutrition in the World, ” over 820 million people worldwide are undernourished, up from 811 million in 2017. This is continuing a fairly recent trend of rising world hunger since 2016 when the number increased for the first time in over 10 years. Prior to that, world hunger had been decreasing at a fairly consistent, slow rate since 1992. This marked a trend of over 20 years.

History of Rising World Hunger

Overall, this is not the first time there has been an increase. From 2000 to 2005, numbers began increasing for the first time since 1992, before decreasing again. That trend continued for about ten years, decreasing at a solid rate until 2015. In 1992, the number of individuals undernourished in the world was just over one billion.

In 2015, the number was 784 million. Likewise, over 200,000 people were freed from hunger during this time. This is about a 22 percent decrease in the number of hungry people. This was all accomplished over the span of 25 years.

Why Rising World Hunger Is a Cause for Concern

Considering the history of overcoming an increase in world hunger, is this recent increase cause for concern? According to the UN report, it is still a cause for alarm.

The report details that world hunger is rising due to multiple supplemental factors. For one, the global economic downturn of 2008-2009 caused uneven recovery. It has also led to unstable GDP growth. Reliance on global commodities, which were disrupted around that time, has caused volatility and unpredictability in the economies of those countries. Due to these events, households often experience a decrease in purchasing power. As a result, they cannot purchase as much food.

What Can Be Done?

Economic stability would alleviate hunger for many people, so what can be done to increase economic stability in these countries? According to the UN, this has much to do with socioeconomic inequalities. In the report, economic growth is not always enough to ensure the reduction of poverty and hunger. Even if a country’s GDP is rising, inequality means that those of lower socioeconomic standing will not see nearly as much of the positive impacts.

The report ultimately calls for countries experiencing severe hunger problems to implement policy change in protecting the income of those living in poverty. Additionally, it identifies the need for diversification of economies to avoid over-dependence on global commodities. Reliance on more unstable commodities does provide massive short-term profits and boons for the GDP. However, that reliance damages the integrity of those economies in the long-term run.

Overall, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN believes there are ways to fight rising world hunger. Tackling inequalities via effective policy and strengthening the consistency of individual economies will be the keys to reversing this trend.

A Number of Efforts

Other nonprofit organizations such as Rise Against Hunger, The Hunger Project, and Heifer International are also taking the approach of targeting long-term stability in order to reverse the trend that world hunger is rising. For instance, Rise Against Hunger has initiatives in countries such as the Philippines, Vietnam, Cambodia, Nicaragua, Mali and Senegal. Each initiative focuses on giving impoverished communities the tools to become more economically stable. All of these organizations have their own similar initiatives which follow the UN report.

Ultimately, with the continued effort on the part of the UN, nonprofit organizations and individual action, world hunger can be overcome. Though world hunger is rising, the trend is still reversible. The fight is far from over.

– Jade Follette
Photo: Flickr

Top 10 Global Poverty Advocacy Nonprofits
Progress is happening. In 2000, the world’s leaders set out to cut the number of people living in extreme poverty in half by the year 2015. Not only were they successful, but they achieved their goal seven years early thanks to global poverty advocacy nonprofits. Now, the world’s most prosperous nations have decided to end world hunger entirely by the year 2030.

While The Borgen Project fights endlessly to assist in this goal, it also recognizes that this is a battle that cannot be fought alone. The Borgen Project takes this opportunity to acknowledge the crucial work being done by its fellow advocates by presenting its pick of the top 10 global poverty advocacy nonprofits.

 

Top 10 Global Poverty Advocacy Nonprofits

  1. Action Against Hunger – For the past 40 years, Action Against Hunger has been saving the lives of undernourished children. The organization has provided access to clean drinking water, food and healthcare services to more than 20 million people across 50 countries. Recognizing the amazing work being done, Charity Navigator has given Action Against Hunger its highest rating for the past 13 years. This organization was also awarded the title of “Best in America” from Independent Charities in America.
  2. The Hunger Project – The Hunger Project fights for “the sustainable end of world hunger.” In order to achieve this, the organization focuses on empowering women. It workshops with communities in order to determine what the community considers a priority and works in tandem to develop a long-term plan to achieve this goal. The Hunger Project operates across Africa, South Asia and Latin America. To date, the Hunger Project has worked with more than 16,000 communities.
  3. Global Food Banking Network The Global Food Banking Network delivers over 940 million pounds of food to those in need every year by redistributing surplus food. Their network of food banks spans across 29 countries. The organization works both to develop new food banks in impoverished communities as well as supporting the ones that already exist. In Hong Kong, the Global Food Banking Network started implementing an IT Starter Kit that will enable an additional 260,000 pounds of food to be delivered each year through improved efficiency. They hope, that with success, they will be able to spread this innovation to other countries.
  4. Heifer International – Heifer International has over 70 years of experience working with individuals in 25 different countries. Through its program Passing on the Gift, supporters are able to donate an animal. That animal is then gifted to a farming family, but in return, the family must give the animal’s first female offspring to another family in need. While over the years the logistics of the program have fluctuated, the notion of continuing the goodwill of others has remained a core component of their approach.
  5. Rise Against HungerIn 2017, Rise Against Hunger benefited 1.4 million people across 74 countries. The organization’s 398,000 volunteers package meals for food insecure peoples. To date, more than 441 million meals have been delivered. In addition, the organization assists communities in expanding their agricultural production capabilities, acquiring business skills and garnishing an understanding of how to best operate markets.
  6. The ONE Campaign – Similar to The Borgen Project, The ONE Campaign seeks to implement change through lobbying for the world’s poor. In 9 years, the organization’s 9 million volunteers have secured $37.5 billion for funding health initiatives that treat preventable diseases in African communities. The organization has lobbied for legislation in the U.S., Canada and EU that would help fight corruption.
  7. Freedom From Hunger – Freedom from Hunger micro-finances small businesses in impoverished communities. In 2016, 5.7 million people benefited from these programs. Recognizing the need for additional resources, the organization also provides information on agricultural techniques, savings programs, family planning and accessing healthcare. In 2012, Philanthropedia ranked Freedom from Hunger 5 out of 119 international microfinance organizations.
  8. The Alliance to End Hunger – The Alliance to End Hunger is a 90 member coalition of both private and public institutions that seek solutions to those living in extreme poverty. Its National Alliance Partnership Program supports communities in more than 60 countries, including Ghana, Guatemala, Kenya, Malawi, Tanzania, Uganda, and Zambia. The organization advocates by getting numerous diverse stakeholders to invest in the same cause. The Alliance to End Hunger works with USAID, USDA, WFP,  FAO and the IFAD.
  9. MEDLIFE – Founded in 2005, MEDLIFE is an organization that actively addresses medical concerns of impoverished communities. The organization operates in underserved areas outside of the capital cities of Peru and Nicaragua as well as rural areas throughout Ecuador and Tanzania. In these countries, the organization sends volunteers to run mobile clinics, provide basic health education and work on community development projects. These projects include providing classrooms, daycare centers and restroom facilities.
  10. Hunger Relief International – Hunger Relief International focuses on developing long-term plans to address the developmental needs of impoverished communities in Haiti and Guatemala, such as nutrition, water and sanitation and child protection. In 2016, the organization regularly supplied 27 Haitian orphanages with high-quality food baskets. In the aftermath of Hurricane Matthew, Hunger Relief International worked to ensure the safety of 1,500 children. The organization also distributed over 2,000 personal hygiene kits to children in need.

This list of the top 10 global poverty advocacy nonprofits provides only a glimpse into the numerous efforts being made to assist the world’s poor. The Borgen Project would like to extend its thanks to the countless other organizations working for this same cause and encourage the reader to join any these top 10 global poverty advocacy nonprofits and others in the campaign to end world hunger.

– Joanna Dooley

Photo: Flickr

Rise Against Hunger: An Organization Striving to Create a Tangible Impact

With an alarming 805 million people in the world impacted by hunger, organizations such as Rise Against Hunger are striving to do their part in alleviating malnourished and hungry nations. Because poverty is largely caused by conflict and lack of resources, it is said to be the principal cause of hunger. Rise Against Hunger ignites the passion and drive to address this reality by doing its part in feeding millions and ending global hunger.

What Does Rise Against Hunger Do?

Established in 1998, Rise Against Hunger is an international hunger relief organization with aspirations to end hunger by 2030. Its daily task is to distribute food and aid to the world’s most vulnerable. The organization’s 2017 impact report shows that well over 1.4 million lives were impacted by this single organization in 36 different countries, sending out 76 million meals. A crucial factor in its success can be accredited to its four pillars toward ending world hunger:

  1. Grow movement
  2. Empower communities
  3. Nourish lives
  4. Emergency relief

An effective tool it uses for growing the movement is the volunteering events it hosts throughout different universities and other organizations. This allows people to come together as a community to take action with Rise Against Hunger by packaging meals for distribution to the world’s hungry.

The organization empowers communities by educating and advocating about topics such as sustainable agriculture and hosting clean water projects. Rise Against Hunger also nourishes lives by giving warm, sustainable meals to those who are in dire need by responding to disasters efficiently, therefore providing effective emergency relief with these prepackaged meals.

Who Does the Organization Help?

Tom Barbitta, the Rise Against Hunger Chief Marketing Director, emphasizes the importance of how education plays a vital role in global poverty and how this, as a result, affects the hunger scale of a nation. “A country has never been able to lift itself out of poverty without first hitting a 40 percent literacy rate,” he told The Borgen Project. “Because of this, around 40 percent of the meals distributed from Rise Against Hunger end up in school feeding programs.”

Children who are living in severe poverty have to spend their time begging for food, rather than receiving an education that will benefit them in the future. The organization keeps this in the forefront of its work and Baritta comments that “we hope to empower young minds to take control of their own community.”

Aspirations Become Reality

A 12-year-old child from Zambia, Aswali, who once did not have adequate access to food, now receives meals each day from Rise Against Hunger distributed by Family Legacy Missions. He is also able to provide food for his family while attending school, decreasing the global poverty rate.

Meals from Rise Against Hunger are also distributed to vocational training facilities. In places such as West Africa, when the people in these facilities have access to meals, they are able to focus on their skills which will, in turn, give them an income that allows them to allocate more food for their families and live life on their own terms.

Rise Against Hunger is an organization that makes valuable efforts toward putting an end to the widespread global hunger. Its impact remains prevalent, with thousands of volunteers joining each year creating an effective tool for growing the movement. Rise Against Hunger understands the importance of every individual being able to make a viable difference toward diminishing poverty.

– Angelina Gillispie

Photo: Flickr