Hunger and famine are the burning problems troubling the world community during many years. According to the statistics, approximately 7.3 billion individuals inhabit our planet. Among them, about 805 million human beings suffer from hunger. It makes about 10 percent. Approximately “800 million people still experience chronic and transitory hunger each year”. First, this paper will draw attention to some of the consequences of hunger. Second, it will regard the statistic data and the reasons of famine. Third, It will highlight the activities of numerous charity and volunteer organizations that deal with the challenge, heroically supporting the most vulnerable categories and individuals from low-income families both in the USA and worldwide.
Hunger as the Topical Problem
Definitions of the Key Notions
There are different definitions of hunger. It can be referred to as “the uneasy or painful sensation caused by want of food; craving appetite. Also the exhausted conditions caused by want of food; the want or scarcity of food in a country; a strong desire or craving”. Therefore, the world hunger is the lack of food enhanced to the level of a state or even exceeding it. It concerns people sufferring from malnutrition or undernutrition.
There are two key categories of malnutrition, such as protein-energy malnutrition and micronutrient deficiency.
Protein-energy malnutrition refers to the scarcity of calories and protein. In fact, nutriment is transformed into vitality during the physiological processes in human bodies. Protein plays an important role in human organism. Besides, it supplies important amino acids and boosts the growth of muscles. Protein-energy malnutrition is the most dangerous type of hunger. It causes the growth failure. There are two categories of growth failure, such as wasting or nutritional edema and stunting. Wasting is often refers to marasmus. The distinctive feature of wasting is the quick decrease of weight. Reaching the progressive form, the wasting causes death of individuals. This disease is the result of small amount of protein in human nutrition. Stunting is the second type of protein-energy malnutrition. In fact, this process takes a long time. The reason of this disease is the shortage of certain nourishing elements in human food. According to the statistics, approximately 161 million children suffer from stunting in the world. At the first glance, children with stunting do not differ from healthy ones by their bodies. Nevertheless, they are smaller than their peers. As it was mentioned, the key causes of stunting are poor diet and frequent infections.
Micronutrient deficiency is the kind of malnutrition, characterized by the shortage of certain vitamins or minerals. This disease is not related with the world hunger.
Micronutrient defifiencies lead to the health disbalance. Human organisms experience the shortage of the most important elements, such as iron, Vitamin A, and Iodine.
Iron is extremely important for individuals. Nevertheless, aproximately 50% of pregnant women and about 40% of children of underschool age suffer from anemia in developing countries. Worm infections, malaria, and tuberculoisis aggravate the state of affairs.
The shortage of Vitamin A leads to night blindness. People with this health disbalance suffer from various infections because their organisms cannot strrugle against illnesses. About 250 million children aged under 5 suffer from the shortage of Vitamin A. Every year, the lack of Vitamin A rsultsin blindness up to 500,000 children. Moreover, approximately 50 percent of them die during one year since they have lost the sight.
The shortage of Iodine leads to impaired cognitive development. Sufferring from the lack of Iodine, pregnant women can get “stillbirth, spontaneous abortion, and congenital abnormalities, such as cretinism, a grave, irreversible form of mental retardation”. This abonrmalities habitually occur among individuals who inhabit Africa and Asia.
The shortage of clean water leads to numerous troubles with individuals’ health. According to the statistic data, approximately 1.7 billion individuals do not have enough access to the water. This phenomenon leads to originating various water-borne diseases that can be found among about 2.3 billion individuals. Moreover, nearly 12% of the globsl population have access to 85% of the world’s water. Nevertheless, “none of the 12 percent lives in developing countries”.
The Statistical Overview of the State of Affairs all over the World
Hunger is considered to be one of the most dangerous phenomena. To illustrate, approximately 21,000 individuals die because of shortage of food and reasons caused by it. “The employment intensity of economic growth is the principal link in the growth of poverty”. Therefore, the great majority of suffering individuals are located in the developing countries. They are “Bangladesh, Nepal, Cambodia, Ethiopia and Uganda”. They make approximately 13.5 percent of the population in the developing countries. In developed countries, the number of individuals suffering from hunger makes is equal to 11 million.
The amount of individuals suffering from hunger decreases. According to the statistical data, the major part of suffering individuals inhabits developing countries. The number of human beings belonging to this category decreases during the period of 1990- 2014 from 23.4% to 13.5% respectively. In fact, approximately 60% of undernourished individuals live in Asia.
Women make about 60% of the individuals sufferring from hunger. Approximately half of pregnant women do not receive enough medica care that cause about 240,000 lethal cases every year. The shortage of food leads to about 45% of lethal cases among children aged under five. They make about 3.1 million individuals per year or 8,500 individuals every day.
Children belong to the category that has suffered from hunger in the most degree. Hunger causes “fetal growth restriction, stunting, wasting, and deficiencies of vitamin A and zinc along with suboptimum breastfeeding”. To illustrate, approximately 31 million children die every year because of hunger consequences. This reason made about 45% rate of all children’s deaths in 2011. Hunger increases the detrimental effect of severe diseases, such as measles, pneumonia, amd malaria. According to the statistics of 2013, approximately 161 million children under five years old suffer from stunting. Fortunately, the amount of stunting cases is lowering. In 2000, about 33% of children of the avove-mentioned age suffered from the disease. In 2013, the number of patients dicreased to 25%. It lowered from 199 million to 161 million respectively. As for wasting, about 51 million of the children aged under five sufferred from the disease. Moreover, approximately 17 million sufferred from the severe wasting. According to the statistics data of 2013. About 655 of all ill children are located in Asia. The rest individuals lived in Africa.
Causes of Hunger on the Global Scale
There are several key causes of hunger, such as poverty, harmful economic systems, conflicts, the extreme growth of the world population, wrong food and agricultural policies, and climate change.
Poverty is considered to be the major cause of the world hunger. The range of its elements comprises the shortage of resources, an unfair income distribution on the gloval scale and in certain countries, in particular. According to the statistics of 2015, above 1 billion individuals exist on less than $1.25 per day. In 1990, these data made about 1.91 billion, and 1.93 billion in 1981 respectively. Analyzing these data, the results are the following: approximately 17% of individuals in the developing countriesexist at less thatm $1.25 per day in 2011, 43% in 1990, and 52% in 1981 respectively.
Harmful economic systems make the second cause of the world hunger. The state of a country’s economics depends on military, political, and economic power.In fact, the economics works distributing goods that people produce. Nevertheless, unfair distribution of goods often takes place (Vanderslice). The mode of life makes certain influence on people. To illustrate, approximately 75% of individuals with an extremely low income inhabit rural territories. They are contingent on agriculture, including the geographical and weather conditions. This category makes about 1.4 billion women children, and men.
Conflicts are the third major cause of the world hunger. According to the statistics of 2012, above 172 million individuals were invloved into global conflicts. Among them, approximately 149 million became conflict-affected residents. They made about 87%. Internally displaced individuals made about 18 million.
Climate change makes the great influence on the geographical location of hunger. Technological innovations come in help in the agricultural field. Nevertheless, this problem is not to be solved entirely. In fact, “30% of farmers in developing countries are food-insecure”.
Effective Programs Directed to the End of Hunger
The world community initiates numerous projects to struggle against the global hunger. Churches, charity organizations, food banks, and non-profit institutions are involved into the beneficial activity.
The American Association of Retired Persons and its affiliation called the AARP Foundation solve the difficult task of overcoming the global hunger. This organization unites people age from 50 and older. Approximately 37 million individuals join this assosiation. Volunteers assist the elderly to take part in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program that studies reasons and consequences of hunger. This organization not only draw the world public attention to the hunger among the elderly, but gives them help. To illustrate, AARP and its Foundation have suggested about 22.9 million meals since its setting in 2011. ‘Feeding America’ is the second charity organization that helps striving people. It unites about two hundred food banks all over the world. ‘Feeding America’ helps approximately 37 million individuals, comprising about 14 million children and 3 million elderly. The organization has local affiliations like “food pantries, soup kitchens, emergency shelters, and after-school programs”. ‘Feeding America’ gives money into 97% of charity activities for people with low income. ‘Generations United’ is the charity organization providing public programs and policies for benefits of the most vulnerable categories of the population, such as the elderly and children.‘Meals on Wheels’ is the American charity organization that distributes free meals, helping handucapped people. It unites about 1.7 million members that makes it the most significant volunteer organization in the United States.‘No Kid Hungry’ compaign deals with he nutritious education. Educators and chefs help families with low income to cope with their food budget. They give advice how to do wise shopping and cook cheap, healthy and tasty food .United States Fund (UNICEF) is the worldwide organization that works in about 190 countries.The key activity of this body is organizaing nutrition to children. In fact, volunteers helped about 6 million children, giving them food and milk. The organization initiates various programs helping to overcome famine. UNICEF boosted the global provision of theurapeutic meals by more than 9,000% dering the period between 2008 and 2012. World Food Programme originated about 50 years ago. It helps inhabitans of territories sufferring from famine.
Governments do not stay apart, providing various government programs and policies. To illustrate, federal domestic nutrition programs work in the USA. They are SNAP, Women, Infants, and Children Program, the school lunch program, and many other ones. Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program provides food support to people from poor families. In fact, SNAP is considered to be the most famous project in the domestic field. Its coordinators cooperate with the national agencies, nutrition coachers, and religious organizations. The aim is obtaining nutrition collaboration to make proper decisions. The Food and Nutrition Service collaborate with the national partners. It develops the project management and guarantees the integrity of the project. The Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children suggests Federal support to the states, giving foods and suggesting nutrition education to women from poor families and children aged under five years old that can occur at nutritional danger.The National School Lunch Program is”a federally assisted meal program operating in over 100,000 public and non-profit private schools and residential child care institutions”. This project gives nutritious, cheap, and even free food for lunch to above 31 million American children every year. The initiative originated in 1998, whrn the U.S. Congress enhanced the National School Lunch Program in extra educational projects to comprise children up to 18 years old. In the United States, this project is managed at the Federal rank. State education agencies are involved into the administration of the project. Special nutritious standards prescribe the nourishing components of the school lunces. They include various fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. Experts developed calory requirements for each grade from K-5 up to K-12.
Sponsors take an active part in the overcoming the global hunger. For example, the founders of the charity ‘The Hunger Project’ have collected about $1.9 million to cope with the global shortage of lack. Advanced Solar Products, Carlson Wagonlit Travel, Cisco, Citi, CWS Capital Partners LLC, Deloitte, Gap International, HP, JMJ Associates, Newmark Holdings, Scotiabank and Sunergos”. Numerous ‘food for work’ programs are provided. These events suggest the ffeding adult individuals for their labour, such as building educational establishments, digging wells, creating roads, and similar activities. Children can be treated with ‘food for education’ programs. They suggest food to boys and girls for their studying at schools. This step has other beneficial consequences because the obtained knowledge would help the children to find good jobs and overcome the world’s hunger and poverty in the future.
Hunger is one of the most dangerous challenges facing the humanity. The key notions of the paper are hunger, protein-energy malnutrition and micronutrient deficiency. Hunger is the want or scarcity of food in a country, a strong desire or craving. The world hunger is the lack of food enhanced to the level of a state or even exceeding it. Protein-energy malnutrition refers to the scarcity of calories and protein. Micronutrient deficiency is the kind of malnutrition, characterized by the shortage of certain vitamins or minerals. Hunger may cause such detrimental consequences as the growth failure in the form of wasting or nutritional edema and stunting and even deaths of individuals.
The major part of suffering individuals is located in the developing countries. Poverty, harmful economic systems, conflicts, the extreme growth of the world population, wrong food and agricultural policies, and climate change are the main reasons of the world hunger.
Peoples of various countries and Americans in particular are united in their struggle against the global hunger. The American Association of Retired Persons and its affiliation called the AARP Foundation, ‘Feeding America’, ‘Generations United’, ‘Meals on Wheels’, ‘No Kid Hungry’, UNICEF, World Food Programme work globally. In the USA, SNAP, Women, Infants, and Children Program, the school lunch program, and many other projects support the vulnerable categories.