Upon examining more into the pandemic of hunger and homelessness, I went out into the world, into the Science leadership environment, and on Facebook to ask people thought provoking questions about their awareness of world hunger and homelessness. Based on a survey of 54 people, 39% have claim that they have been homeless in one point of their lives. Also, 32% say that they know someone who eats only one meal a day.
Here is a link if you want to view my survey: https://docs.google.com/a/scienceleadership.org/spreadsheet/ccc?key=0Ajm4KyXhAiaYdFlVNzRyRldXaV85V3hDOXJqZmNrUkE#gid=0
Knowing that we live in the United States, I find that these statistics are slightly mind-boggling. The the United States has a GDP of approximately 15.3 trillion dollars which is the highest in the world, but yet out of 54 people, already 39% say that they were homeless and 32% claim they only eat one meal a day. If you put that on a grander scale, 672,000 are homeless in America currently and 6.7 million people suffer from food insecurity. Although the rate of homelessness has decreased, which is substantial progress, people are still going to bed each night hungry. Or they might not even have a bed.
An other major predicament is the amount of food we waste each year. I inquired in my survey if anyone has ever wasted food, and 81% said they did. According to The Charity Sub, the United States throws away 96 billion pounds of food each year. That is enough to feed the the whole state of New York, for three years! I believe our problem is that we have the resources to tackle this obstacle, but we just don’t know how to use them.
In my survey, I also questioned peoples’ opinion on whether or not they thought homelessness and hunger was an epidemic. More than 80% agreed and 91% of the people said that these conditions are common in their neighborhood.
I am seeking further advice from an organization, Bread for the World. Bread is a 501(c)4 Christian organization that presses our nation’s government to put an end to hunger in this country. I am corresponding two of their representatives, Jon Gromek, the Central Regional Organizer and Larry Hollar, the Senior Regional Organizer. Upon motioning through the interviewing process, they are away in Washington D.C. until Monday, January 21. You will hear from them in my final blog post with their response to these crucial affairs. But the Senior Regional Organizer has responded back to me with an urgent plea to call our Congress members to urge them to continue to fund programs that address hunger and poverty before the fiscal cliff negotiations are made soon. If you would like to participate here is a link for information on how to inform our congress: http://blog.bread.org/2012/12/act-now-congress-needs-to-hear-your-voice.html. Call Congressmen Bob Casey, Pat Toomey, and Chaka Fatah and tell them to pass a deal that includes protection to essential programs to hungry and poor people in the U.S. and around the world.
Here's a link to my bibliography: https://docs.google.com/a/scienceleadership.org/document/d/1va6NEzQioqza2fzxFDTiaYiKoWn-vnI50O0FopaOarY/edit
Here's a video about hunger and food insecurity: