It was on February 25th, 1946 that former President Herbert Hoover was called again into action. Hoover was fishing when he received a message that President Harry Truman wanted him to come to Washington, DC at once. The post World War II hunger crisis was escalating and Hoover, with his vast experience in humanitarian aid, was the person Truman wanted to help.
What followed was a 38-nation tour by Hoover as a "food ambassador." Hoover and his team visited these countries to find out how to solve their food shortages and gain international cooperation to meet the global crisis.
Maurice Pate, a leader in founding UNICEF, made it a priority to find out the needs of children in each country the Hoover team visited. Child feeding programs became a significant part of U.S. foreign policy.
U.S. led food aid saved millions of lives and was essential for the war-torn countries to rebuild and not descend into utter chaos.
Today, a type of "food ambassador" is the goal of the Roadmap to End Global Hunger legislation (H.R. 2817), which is still waiting on action from the Obama administration and Congress.
Just this week representatives Chellie Pingree, Lois Capps, and Zoe Lofgren all signed on to the Roadmap bill. The total number of supporters in the House now stands at 34 with hopefully more on the way.
Click here to listen to Herbert Hoover report on world hunger on May 17, 1946 following his trip as a food ambassador to over 30 countries on behalf of President Truman.