FOOD programs

Ensuring Children and Adults Have Access to Nutritious Meals

The One Positive Change Food Program (OPCFP) is a global program that provides reimbursements for nutritious meals and snacks to eligible children and adults who are enrolled for care at participating child care centers, day care homes, and adult day care centers.

 

OPCFP also provides reimbursements for meals served to children and youth participating in after school care programs, children residing in emergency shelters, and adults over the age of 60 or living with a disability and enrolled in day care facilities. OPCFP contributes to the wellness, healthy growth, and development of young children and adults around the world.

HUNGER AND MALNUTRITION ARE PREVENTABLE


The fact that the world produces more than enough food to feed the entire world (4 billion metric tons), and one-third of it gets wasted, leaving hundreds of millions of people hungry, is a tragedy.

High-income countries leave food on the plate, and low- and middle-income countries leave food in the field or lose it in production. This results in millions of malnourished children dying each year from a preventable cause.

Hunger and malnutrition create a self-sustaining barrier that keeps people stuck in poverty. Hunger makes it more difficult for a person to learn, work, pursue opportunities and contribute to society. It drains a person’s energy, destroys mental acuity, and exacts a heavy price on health throughout his or her life.

Beginning with undernutrition in fetal and early life and extending to long-term health problems such as stunted physical growth, coronary heart disease, stroke, and diabetes, malnutrition exacts an enormous cost in quality and length of life.

Chronically undernourished children who manage to survive their first five years, often live with devastating results. Their bodies are stunted physically, they are highly susceptible to illness, and their brains are underdeveloped. The hope of reaching their full, God-given potential is all but shattered.

PUT AN END TO HUNGER AND MALNUTRITION

 

When children do not have enough food to eat, or the food available to them is deficient in nutrients, malnourishment and chronic health issues become a serious and potentially life-threatening reality.

To fight this, we partner with local homeless shelters around the world to implement early intervention health and nutrition initiatives providing individualized care and attention for thousand of children affected by poverty

Our health and nutrition initiatives help meet the life-threatening needs of hungry children, while also providing preventive care to support long-term wellness.

Our frontline shelters partners are trained to identify child malnutrition and take immediate action to address it. Often that means a program of emergency feeding and vitamin supplements for a severely malnourished child, as well as working with the child’s caregivers to ensure that meals at home meet nutritional needs.

Additionally, our shelters partners provide the children with regular nutritious meals and snacks on program activity days and teach the children about the importance of a balanced diet, as well as ways the children can eat healthy outside of program activity days.

By giving to our Health and Nutrition Fund, you are providing supplemental food, vitamins and medical care to malnourished children and are supporting our therapeutic feeding and food stability initiatives for infants and newborns.

Your donation will safeguard children from illnesses that hamper their early childhood development and threaten their lives. With your support, we can provide poor children around the world the nutritious food, medical care, and health and hygiene training they need to survive and thrive.

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 Venezuelans Crisis

 South america migration

This Colombian woman shelters 150 Venezuelans every day

Every day, the economic and political crisis in Venezuela forces hundreds to abandon their homeland. The most common destination is Colombia due to the proximity and the size of its shared border with Venezuela. 

Many refugees, about 1.5 million, have chosen to remain in Colombia, but others have continued on to Ecuador, Peru, Chile or Mexico. As the crisis has worsened, most refugees leaving Venezuela today do not have enough money for a bus ticket and are forced to travel on foot.

To get from Cucuta to the next nearest town, these "caminates", or "walkers" must travel 195km, climb mountains 3,200 metres above sea level and then back down. Various NGOs and Colombians living in the region have set up camps to help the desperate Venezuelans endure the harsh conditions and freezing temperatures during the journey.

Maria del Pilar Figueroa lives at the most difficult point along the route, in La Laguna, Paramo de Berlin. After she witnessed the procession of Venezuelans passing by her home, she decided to open up her home as a refuge. Now, she's running a shelter. Along with her two children, Maria dedicates her life to helping the refugees fleeing her neighboring country. Their lives have changed completely, as have those of the Venezuelans they have met.

There are now nearly 3.5 million Venezuelan refugees and migrants worldwide, according to the United Nations' refugee agency (UNHCR).

 

15 kids and their grandmother

South america argentina

For the third consecutive year, South America slid backwards in the global struggle to achieve zero hunger by 2030, with 39 million people living with hunger and five million children suffering from malnutrition.

“It’s very distressing because we’re not making progress. We’re not doing well, we’re going in reverse. You can accept this in a year of great drought or a crisis somewhere, but when it’s happened three years in a row, that’s a trend,” reflected Julio Berdegué, FAO’s highest authority in Latin America and the Caribbean.

The regional representative of the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations said it is cause for concern that it is not Central America, the poorest subregion, that is failing in its efforts, but the South American countries that have stagnated.

“More than five million children in Latin America are permanently malnourished. In a continent of abundant food, a continent of upper-middle- and high-income countries, five million children … It’s unacceptable,” he said in an interview with IPS at the agency’s regional headquarters in Santiago.

“They are children who already have scars in their lives. Children whose lives have already been marked, even though countries, governments, civil society, NGOs, churches, and communities are working against this. The development potential of a child whose first months and years of life are marked by malnutrition is already radically limited for his entire life,” he said.

What can the region do to move forward again? In line with this year’s theme of World Food Day, celebrated Oct. 16, “Our actions are our future. A zero hunger world by 2030 is possible”, Berdegué underlined the responsibility of governments and society as a whole.

Governments, he said, must “call us all together, facilitate, support, promote job creation and income generation, especially for people from the weakest socioeconomic strata.”

In addition, he stressed that policies for social protection, peace and the absence of conflict and addressing climate change are also required.

Children's shelters

support

Get to know the reality of hundreds of children who depend on these shelters every day to be able to feed themselves.

Check how they live...

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