Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
November 4 was World Hunger Sunday. In this year’s World Hunger Campaign we have been highlighting some of the things that World Renew/CRWRC has been able to accomplish over the past fifty years, and encouraging you and your congregation to continue to partner with us. We have also been challenging you to model your hearts after God’s heart – a heart of justice, caring, and mercy for those who are most vulnerable in this world.
We at World Renew sometimes feel discouraged by the sheer number of vulnerable people on this earth, and often feel a bit battered and bruised by the numerous hurricanes, storms, floods, droughts, earthquakes and conflicts that bring damage and devastation to those who are already living in need. But we do not lose heart. The battle is being won, one person, one family and one community at a time. Last year, through God’s grace and goodness, World Renew was able to provide community programs to 912,000 people while also providing emergency and long-term assistance to 946,000 disaster survivors. That means, on average, each member of the CRC contributed to significantly improving the lives of six people who were struggling with poverty or suffering from disaster. Thank you!
Together, we are making progress. Globally, the number of people who are chronically undernourished has declined from about 1 billion people (18.6% of the world’s population) 20 years ago to 868 million people (12.4%) today. This is great news, but the fact that 868 million people are hungry is totally unacceptable.
There is currently enough food available to feed everyone on the planet. Structural changes to reduce world hunger are as crucial as ever, and so while our hearts of caring and mercy must continue to overflow with generosity, we must also continue our justice and advocacy efforts.
The struggle for positive structural change is made all the more urgent by the seemingly increasing negative impacts of climate change. Most of the countries we work in are facing unpredictable rainfall patterns, bringing storms and floods and more frequent and prolonged droughts. Vulnerable people are less and less able to cope. We are so grateful that you enabled us to respond in very significant ways to provide food to families affected by the severe droughts in Niger (West Africa) and in Kenya, Ethiopia and Somalia (East Africa), and to major floods in Pakistan, Sri Lanka and the Philippines.
The need for food assistance will continue, and we are very thankful for our almost 30-year membership in the Canadian Foodgrains Bank (CFGB) which has enabled us to multiply your gifts with Canadian government funding and quickly and efficiently reach millions of people in urgent need. We greatly appreciate the CFGB’s additional emphases on long-term food security and global structural change, which seek to address the root causes underlying the need for food aid.
As we embrace an uncertain, but certainly challenging, future under the new banner of World Renew, we do not lose heart because we know that you are with us, but above all because we know that we are serving our God and He is with us.
In His Service
Director Disaster Response & Rehabilitation
International Disaster Response