Food Security

The Needs

More than 840 million people worldwide do not have enough to eat.* According to the World Health Organization, hunger is the gravest threat to the world’s public health. Left unchecked, prolonged hunger leads to malnutrition, which causes 3.1 million child deaths annually.

Malnutrition reduces the body's resilience, and treatable illnesses like diarrhoea and malaria can become life-threatening. In addition, malnutrition causes stunting, reduced brain size, skin conditions, and bone disease. The spill-over effects do not stop there. Because of the impeded brain development, a child's intellect is affected, curtailing their potential in school and limiting their future opportunities in life.

*Hunger Statistics, 2013, World Food Programme

Key Challenges

Poor Crop and Livestock Quality

Because they are poor, farmers cannot afford better seed varieties that are drought-resistant or can produce higher yield. They also cannot afford better animal breeds or purchase vaccines and feed that can strengthen their existing livestock.

Ineffective Farming Methods

Due to a lack of progress, farmers still use traditional farming methods that are unsustainable, such as the slash and burn technique. This decreases soil quality over time.

Limited Nutrition Knowledge

Mothers and caregivers are not educated on the need for a balanced diet, and even if they are aware, they either do not know where to go to get nutritious food or simply cannot afford it.

Vulnerability to Shocks and Disasters

Natural disasters like drought or flood and climate change that causes erratic weather cause crop failure and livestock death. Communities are not aware of how to prepare for and manage under such circumstances.

Lack of Alternative Income Streams

Most families in rural areas depend heavily on agriculture for income. When that fails to generate enough revenue, they are unable to provide food and other basic needs to their children.