On the Eighth day of Christmas…

My True Love gave to me…Eight Maids a Milking.

For several years now I have asked my mother-in-law, when she persistently keeps asking what I want for Christmas, to purchase me some farm animals from Heifer International.  I love the concept of giving an animal to a community for them to provide food for themselves.  See for yourself in the video that I have attached.

Now, there are critics of this organization that say that the animals are being sent to areas of the world where drought and climate change is increasing the chance that this animal will be put in harm’s way. Given the impending food crisis that many scientists are predicting because the the world’s changing climate I might agree but for the time being, I feel it is a way to help women in other countries to feed their families and start a small business to help their communities. And until the UN, the Wold Bank or somebody figures out a way to move people to higher ground or less dangerous areas away from where disasters happen due to climate change they still are going to need to eat.

Global Hunger Fact
This year 11 million children
younger than 5 will
die needlessly…
More than half of them will
die from hunger-related causes.

Populations will grow to 9.2 billion by 2050 and in turn double today’s global food requirement and outstrip growth in food output.  Combined with unpredictable extreme weather patterns, droughts will haunt those most vulnerable and lead to crop failures, food riots and war.  Food prices will inevitably spike with a rising demand for protein foods such as meat, milk, fish and eggs. Growing shortages of water and less productive land to yield crops will further hinder the world’s future food production.
Read more

HowStuffWorks.com gives a great overview of how hunger organizations work.  The world produces enough food so that no on should have to go hungry. Yet many children are not receiving enough nutrition to maintain a healthy life. The ones who are not starving to death are getting sick from not getting the proper vitamins they need  to grow and learn so that the next generation can survive.

Other organizations that are working hard to help fight global hunger are:

  1. CARE which focuses mainly on women, empowering them to learn and provide for themselves and their family
  2. UNICEF which focuses mainly on the needs of children
  3. Freedom From Hunger
  4. Bread for the World

Bread for the World is a christian organization and I usually try to shy away from those because they tend to try to impose their morals on their efforts. I don’t think they should do that and while I don’t know much about Bread for the World, I do know that World Vision is also a christian based organization that definitely places emphasis on their agendas in terms of contraception. They are big into abstinence and discourage condom use and I don’t think they look at the bigger picture of how to prevent HIV/AIDS. These are just my personal views and I don’t think they should discourage you from supporting an organization that you feel is going to give relief from hunger globally.

I’m hoping that my mother-in-law has put together a menagerie of animals in my name this year. I always delight in telling my coworkers that I got a gaggle of geese or a litter of rabbits for Christmas. Then I tell them about Heifer International and suggest that instead of getting lots of sparkly sweaters this year they should consider a goat for Christmas. It always gets a fun reaction, or their goat, I should say.