U.N.:HUNGER KILLS 18,000 KIDS EACH DAY

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U.N.:HUNGER KILLS 18,000 KIDS EACH DAY

 user 2007-02-20 at 10:53:00 am Views: 70
  • #17588

    Hunger Kills 18,000 Kids Each Day, U.N. Says
    UNITED
    NATIONS (Feb.07) – Some 18,000 children die every day because of hunger
    and malnutrition and 850 million people go to bed every night with
    empty stomachs, a “terrible indictment of the world in 2007,” the head
    of the U.N. food agency said.James Morris called for students and young
    people, faith-based groups, the business community and governments to
    join forces in a global movement to alleviate and eliminate hunger -
    especially among children.”The little girl in Malawi who’s fed, and
    goes to school: 50 percent less likely to be HIV-positive, 50 percent
    less likely to give birth to a low birth weight baby,” he said in an
    interview Friday. “Everything about her life changes for the better and
    it’s the most important, significant, humanitarian, political, or
    economic investment the world can make in its future.”Morris, an
    American businessman and former president the Indianapolis-based Lilly
    Endowment, one of the largest charitable organizations in the U.S., is
    stepping down as executive director of the Rome-based World Food
    Program in April after five years of leading the world’s largest
    humanitarian organization.He said that while the percentage of people
    who are hungry and malnourished has decreased from a fifth of the
    world’s population to a sixth of the population, the actual number of
    hungry people is growing by about 5 million people a year because of
    the rising population.”Today 850 million people are hungry and
    malnourished. Over half of them are children. 18,000 children die every
    single day because of hunger and malnutrition,” Morris said. “This is a
    shameful fact – a terrible indictment of the world in 2007, and it’s an
    issue that needs to be solved.”Morris said the largest number of
    malnourished children are in India – more than 100 million – followed
    by nearly 40 million in China.”I’m very optimistic that India and China
    are very focused on this issue,” he said. “They’re making great
    progress – (but) need to do more. (It) needs to be a top
    priority.”Elsewhere, there are probably 100 million hungry children in
    the rest of Asia, another 100 million in Africa where countries have
    fewer resources to help, and 30 million in Latin America, he said.As
    Morris prepares to leave his post, he said the two issues of greatest
    concern are the increasing number of impoverished people and the “very
    significant, growing number of natural disasters around the
    world.”According to the World Bank, natural disasters have increased
    fourfold over the last 30 years, he said. That means several billion
    people need instant help over the course of a decade because of
    disasters such as the tsunami, the Pakistan earthquake, or drought in
    southern Africa.
    The response to these disasters and conflicts such
    as in Sudan’s Darfur region and Lebanon has meant that most development
    aid has been used to save lives – not to help communities prevent
    disasters and promote development through agricultural programs,
    education for children and water conservation, Morris said.The agency’s
    biggest operation today is in Darfur, where violence and security are
    major problems and 2.5 million people have fled their homes and now
    live in camps.”Our convoys are attacked almost daily. We had a truck
    driver killed there at the end of last year. Our convoys coming through
    Chad from Libya are always at risk. When the African Union troops were
    there, that was very helpful. The U.N. troops will be even more
    helpful,” Morris said.He was referring to a plan for an AU-U.N. force
    to be deployed in Darfur, which is awaiting approval from Sudanese
    President Omar al-Bashir.American diplomat Josette Sheeran will replace
    Morris, who plans to head home to Indianapolis.”I will work as hard as
    I can every day of the rest of my life to see that more resources are
    available to feed hungry children,” Morris said.