What World Food Day Means

MAYA would like to invite you to celebrate the 71st World Food Day this coming October 16. This marks the creation of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) in 1945, which has been at the forefront of eliminating hunger, food insecurity, and malnutrition worldwide.

This year’s theme is “Climate is changing. Food and agriculture must too.” With climate change grows the threat of food insecurity, and the FAO is urging different countries to include food and agriculture in their climate action strategies.

So, what does World Food Day mean to us Filipinos, or better yet, what should it mean to you?

According to the First Quarter of the 2016 Social Weather Survey, 3.1 million families are experiencing hunger nationwide. And if we consider this year’s World Food Day theme, we need to understand that those affected most by climate change are our farmers and fisher folk whose hard work is responsible for the food Filipinos eat daily.

MAYA is especially sympathetic to our farmers. The ingredients found in our products, which in turn are used by you to create yummy hotcakes and baked goods, are provided by these hardworking people. Every food staple is a product of their labor. When we partake of our daily meals, let’s remember those who helped make these possible. Let’s give thanks!

Another way to celebrate is to cook up a big batch of your favorite dishes and feed those who need it most. You can also make monetary donations or simply volunteer your time and goodwill.

There are a several organizations to choose from, including the more renowned ones such as UNICEF, Caritas Manila, or The World Food Programme (WFP). Or, you can try these for a change:

1. Virlaine Foundation
This non-profit organization has been around for over 2 decades and aims to alleviate the plight of street children in the country. They have several programs that provide their beneficiaries with housing, health, and educational benefits, as well as job opportunities and family reunification. Learn more by visiting their website (http://www.virlanie.org/).

2. Feed the Hungry, Inc.
This non-profit organization is relatively new, having been established in 1993. The organization’s mission is to uplift our nation’s poor and abused by providing food, education, disaster relief, and community development through their programs. Learn more by visiting their site (http://feedthehungryphil.org/).

3. Stop Hunger Now Philippines
This international organization has a presence in the U.S.A., Malaysia, Italy, India, and the Philippines. Although a Philippine arm was in the works as early as 2013, it became necessary to launch it as a response to the needs of those devastated by Typhoon Yolanda in 2014. This organization has a clear and strong vision: “a world without hunger,” and it does this by providing food and medical aid where it is needed most. Learn more by visiting their site (http://intl.stophungernow.org/ph/).

So there you have it; it’s really quite simple: World Food Day is all about feeding the hungry and giving respect to where it’s due. In our opinion, this is the ultimate food for your soul.

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