On Saturday 10th November, CAFOD supporters from Wales helped to launch the new Hungry for change campaign.
During the campaigner conference, supporters heard from Bishop John Arnold, CAFOD partner Father Joe Komakoma and theologian David McLoughlin, before joining workshops looking at different aspects of the Hungry for Change campaign and how we can work together to bring about change.
From Westminster Cathedral Hall, CAFOD’s head of campaigns Clare Lyons told the enthusiastic crowd:
“We are delighted to see so many people with such a wealth of enthusiasm and experience. We’ve all learnt so much from each other. Now the real work starts, getting the message out that it’s a scandal that millions of people go hungry in a world which provides enough food for all. Through campaigning, we can all do something about this.”
The Hungry for Change campaign is calling for fundamental changes in the global food system so that power is more justly shared between rich and poor people, and more people can have access to enough food. There are an estimated 870 million people worldwide without enough food to be healthy and live an active life. The overwhelming majority of these live in developing countries. Hunger is the world’s No1 health risk, killing more people every year than AIDS, malaria and tuberculosis combined. The recent financial crisis has pushed even more people around the world to the brink of starvation.
At the launch, Father Joe Komakoma shared stories from his native Zambia showing how, despite the country’s relative economic success, many small-scale farmers are struggling to survive and climate change is making it harder for families to grow enough food to eat and sell.
“I hope that this campaign can raise awareness that there is a problem with food. People may not be aware that every night one in eight people goes without food. The more aware we are, the more obliged we are to do something about it. I hope people will lend their help to the Hungry for Change campaign and stand in solidarity with those who don’t have enough food.”
The new campaign highlights the fact that a handful of supermarkets and food companies dominate the food system, making the rules that decide cost, price and standards. They often also control access to vital resources such as land, seeds and water. Yet 50% of the world’s food is grown by small-scale farmers in developing countries. With little power in the global food supply chain, these farmers are often forced to agree to big companies’ demands regardless of how unfair.
Kieran O’Brien, manager of CAFOD South Wales said:
“This campaign launch was a wonderful example of campaigners coming together, united in such an important cause, and are ready and equipped to go back and roll out the campaign across England and Wales. I am extremely excited about this new campaign and how our supporters in South Wales and Herefordshire can come together and engage on this critical issue around our broken food system.”
Further details on the new campaign will be launched in the New Year, with a list of events and activities which will be taking place near you. So watch this space…