This post is the first in a short series for Elanco in the Truth About Food initiative. This post has been compensated by Elanco to help raise awareness around food security. All opinions are mine alone. #TruthAboutFood
If I close my eyes for a second, I can see it again, as clearly as if I were there. A lanky four year old, straw-like hair on his head, model-like lashes around big velvet eyes. He was a spirited fellow, but at mealtimes he always quieted and quickly wolfed down a tray full of food and then would stare at his classmates’ trays through those beautiful downcast lashes. My heart ached as I would get him a second helping of this, or another portion of that – and it would just as quickly disappear.
Whether you’re four or 104, you shouldn’t have to deal with insecurity around your next meal, or hunger pains from too many missed hours between nourishment. Hunger isn’t a first-world problem or a third-world problem. It’s a global problem. And all people deserve food.
You don’t have to look far beyond your doorstep to see hunger. If we’re a hungry world in 2017 – what will happen in 10 – 20 – 30 years as the population expands? World clocks predict 9 billion people on this planet by 2015.
The mouths hungry today are the minds that will shape tomorrow. The World Health Organization reported that the consequences of nutrient-deficit diets are far reaching – low birth weight, poor brain development, anemia, increased disease, and decreased productivity.
As a mama, I want my mini-Farmers to grow up nourished and well fed in body and spirit. You too? So how can you and I as rockstar moms and dad, grams and gramps, aunts and uncles and all people on this planet navigate hunger in our world, our country, our state, and our neighborhood? What is it going to take to put down agendas and opinions and to speak boldly and respectfully about and to our fellow humans on both ends of the food spectrum?
I do too.
My stomach is empty tonight from my own silly rushed pace of life – and it’s talking to me as I type. I close my eyes, focusing on the feeling in my belly and revisit those beautiful four-year-old eyes stealing glances at food. Part of me cries – what can I possibly do to fix hunger in the world?
A soft voice whispers – you can start in your own space.
My neighborhood. My mini-Farmers school. My community.
And if you do that too – our efforts will reach out and eventually touch. Our global hunger for food will fade as our bellies fill with connection around community.
Let’s start the conversation and spring forward into action. What are you doing in your community to erase hunger?