What are your goals for solving hunger in 2013? Meet Kaasinath. He’s a sixth grader in the United States who challenged his classmates to join Freerice and raise one million grains of rice for the hungry by the end of 2012. With smarts and determination, he met that goal - and now he’s aiming even higher for the future. Here’s his advice for students like him raising awareness about hunger for the first time. Read on for some inspiration to kick start your year of solving hunger.
1) How did you become interested in solving hunger?
Up until 4th grade I was a very picky eater and ended up rejecting half of my meals because they “didn’t fit my standards”. But, when I went to India that very same year and saw all of the hungry kids, babies, and adults begging for food on the streets, I realized how lucky I was to be having all of the healthy and homemade food on my plate. That’s what inspired me to not be picky and to help the needy in my own way.
2) How did you get your classmates involved?
I told my principal about the Freerice website and then I made speeches to my school for 6th, 7th, and 8th grade, convincing them to join Freerice and play in my group, Kaasineary. Finally, I challenged my school, my family -- and myself -- to donate one million grains of rice through my group before 2013. Thanks to my wonderful school and family, we achieved that goal. And now, I’ve set a new challenge: to get 5 million grains of rice by the end of 2013.
3) What advice would you share with students like you trying to inspire their peers to care about hunger?
You can’t fight hunger alone, so you should also try to get your peers from school to help you fight hunger through Freerice. Also, you should try to take the time to learn about hunger by visiting your food pantry and surfing the internet.
4) What do you like about playing Freerice?
I like that the levels get more challenging as you go and that there are always new questions being added. I also like that you donate rice to hungry people while getting smarter. Another thing I like is that you can sit in your house and do it, instead of bugging your parents to drive you around to ask for donations.
5) How did Freerice help you succeed in your efforts?
It helped me prepare for my Geography Bee and for pre-algebra math skills I’ll need in middle school. It also helped me help feed hungry people around the world.
6) What are your goals for raising awareness about hunger in the future?
I am hoping to get at least 100 out of the 530 people in my school into my group (Kaasineary) on Freerice to help donate 5 million grains of rice to WFP by the end of the year.
7) Why do you think young people are important in the fight against hunger?
I think the younger generation is important in the fight against hunger because if you convince them to fight for world hunger now they will fight for hunger world hunger when they grow up -- and then they will tell their kids to fight for world hunger as well.