Worth reading

Thought-provoking articles that deal with hunger and the issues involved in meeting the hunger challenge.

21 July 2009

Africa’s New Path

President Obama was right to give his recent address in Ghana, highlighting an African success story rather than casting his speech against the backdrop of poverty and pity. One of the great underreported stories of the last decade has been the rise of this new Africa. In 2007, before the economic crisis hit, 37 countries on the continent were growing at 4 percent a year or more, and 34 countries there are classified by Freedom House as "free" or "partly free." The OECD reports that, in a first, Africa gets more money from investors than from foreign aid. The continent remains poor, disease-stricken, and often poorly governed. But for the first time in a long time, there is forward momentum.
6 May 2009

For all the debate on the worth of aid, we can well afford to pay the price

From a distance, it could have been a scene from a Constable painting: an idyllic pastoral of cattle feeding from a spring ­surrounded by green ­pastures and shaded by handsome trees. But we were in the middle of Africa and the cattle were paddling in the waters on which the local villages depend. More than 40 jerrycans were neatly lined up in a queue to fill up from the trickle of water coming from a dirty pipe. The chatter and squeals of laughter of a waiting crowd of girls reverberated across the marshes. They told us that it would be more than four hours before all would have had their turn. Four hours a day just to get water.
The Guardian
5 April 2009

Pregnant (Again) and Poor

For all the American and international efforts to fight global poverty, one thing is clear: Those efforts won’t get far as long as women like Nahomie Nercure continue to have 10 children. [...] As we walked through Cité Soleil, the Haitian slum where she lives, her elementary-school-age children ran stark naked around her. The $6-a-month rental shack that they live in — four sleep on the bed, six on the floor beside it — has no food of any kind in it. The family has difficulty paying the fees to keep the children in school. There’s simply no way to elevate Nahomie’s family, and millions like it around the world, unless we help such women have fewer children.
New York Times
3 April 2009

'Dead Aid,' Dead Wrong

The broad American belief that foreign aid is stuffed down tropical rat holes has been recently reinforced by a young Zambian, Oxford-trained economist named Dambisa Moyo. Her book, "Dead Aid," has launched her as a conservative celebrity, feted by Steve Forbes and embraced by the Cato Institute. And the book is something of a marvel: Seldom have so many sound economic arguments been employed to justify such disastrously wrongheaded conclusions.
Washington Post
24 March 2009

The Future of Foreign Assistance

This report by the Council for Foreign Relations urges the United States to "stay the course in health and development aid goals". The report notes that "no question of disease, survival or longevity can be separated from larger development issues, food security or humanitarian crises". The section most relevant to WFP and food assistance starts on page 24.
The Chronicle - US Council on Foreign Relations


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