Media CenterCRS Reacts to Rise in Global Hunger
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Catholic Relief Services
BALTIMORE MD, September 16, 2017 -- In response to the UN global hunger report released yesterday, which states that conflict and climate change a major factors in a rise in hunger not seen in more than a decade, Bill O’Keefe, Catholic Relief Services’ Vice President for Government Relations, said:
“A rise in global hunger is an unacceptable set-back. We cannot ignore the warning signs detailed in the recently released UN global hunger report. No child or person should go hungry. We have the means to end hunger, but lack the political will.
The international community, with US leadership, needs to address the underlying causes of this increase – violence and climate change – now. With 65 million people on the move around the world, many because of conflict, and 20 million people on the verge of famine, we can’t just treat the short-term humanitarian symptoms and ignore long-term solutions.
Climate change impacts millions of people, including many Catholic Relief Services partners with. We have a moral responsibility to help them adapt so that smallholder farmers can grow more food and reduce the degree to which they’re affected by floods and droughts. Smart investments in smallholder agriculture build farmer resilience to climate change.
We also need to foster new public-private partnerships bringing innovative solutions to hunger. Combining efforts and expertise of government, academia, the private sector and NGOs will reduce poverty and increase food security.
With U.S. foreign aid funding under threat, we must urge our elected officials to fund vital programs that both save lives now and create sustainable food security long-term. Together American foreign aid programs like Feed the Future, Food for Peace, and McGovern-Dole Food for Education accomplish both of these objectives.
Foreign aid, though necessary, is insufficient to end the violence and conflict driving so much of the hunger and poverty today. US diplomatic leadership to prevent and resolve conflict is critical. With funding, groups like Catholic Relief Services can feed many hungry people and help them grow more food, but only governments like ours can prevent and end conflict.”
Catholic Relief Services is the official international humanitarian agency of the Catholic community in the United States. The agency alleviates suffering and provides assistance to people in need in more than 100 countries, without regard to race, religion or nationality. CRS’ relief and development work is accomplished through programs of emergency response, HIV, health, agriculture, education, microfinance and peacebuilding. For more information, please visit crs.org or crsespanol.org and follow CRS on social media: Facebook, @CatholicRelief, @CRSnews, YouTube, Instagram and Pinterest.