From the Intern Desk - Christine

Taking advantage of food

Christine diGangi

Sharing a kitchen with four people in their twenties is a mess waiting to happen. Somehow, I seriously underestimated said mess when I moved into my new flat a few weeks ago.

My flatmates love to cook – which is a luxury for me considering my lack of culinary skills – but there’s one problem: leftovers.

I’m all for last night’s pasta for lunch, but that’s not the kind of leftovers I see in my flat. Most mornings when I go into the kitchen for breakfast, I find a pot on the stove, filled with the previous evening’s entrée. A few days ago, it was about two cups of rice, hardened and stuck to the pot. It stayed there for about three days.


It could have been a solid meal – in fact, it could have fed hungry children. Carelessly wasting food disgusts me because there 1.02 billion hungry people around the world (not to mention the hygiene aspect).

Wasting food has always bothered me, and this internship only intensified that feeling. Every day brings me a new perspective on the jarring inconsistencies between life in developed and developing countries.

Winners of the “hunger bytes!” competition were announced today. It is an annual contest for aspiring film makers of any age, and they submit their most provocative, compelling movies about hunger issues. The best video in the over-18 category was “Dreams,” which shows a girl eating 23 calories to lose weight and a boy eating 23 calories to keep from starving.

This visual reminded me how badly some people misuse their food – too many people take it for granted. I’ve definitely been guilty of that myself, but I’ve never been so exposed to the other side of the spectrum.

Not everyone has the means to donate money to the hungry, but raising awareness of the issue goes a long way. For that reason, WFP creates campaigns like Fill the Cup and contests like “hunger bytes!” – you should check it out, share it with a friend, and allow yourself to look at food and hunger differently. 

Christine DiGangi is from Chicago and is interning with WFP Youth Outreach. She loves running, chocolate, and fighting hunger.