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Short Film Calls for Global School Lunch Program to Fight Child Hunger

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A new short film, Ending Child Hunger: School Lunches for Kids Around the World, is a call to action to end the hunger that afflicts 300 million children worldwide. The United States, building upon its tradition of fighting hunger, can lead the international community in making sure every child can receive a school lunch.

The film begins by showing school lunch programs in Austria and Germany following World War II. It was those meals that were crucial to the recovery of Europe since they gave children nourishment, education, and hope. According to the World Food Programme director Josette Sheeran, "The goodwill done during post-World War II from Japan to Germany, France, Scandinavia and beyond helped build goodwill and stability for a generation." Sheeran, speaking at the International Food Aid Conference, added that a simple cup of food for children "has the power to transform lives" and that "throughout many decades, for children this becomes their most precious possession."

Today, millions of children in countries like Afghanistan, Kenya, Haiti, and Sudan are in need of food that will change their lives and build the backbone of peace and progress for their country.

The McGovern-Dole Food for Education program is highlighted as crucial to this effort.
McGovern-Dole is a U.S. government program that funds school lunch programs in impoverished countries. School lunch programs offer a calm in the storm of soaring food prices in developing nations. Having children ensured a meal at school is a valuable safety net for poor families.

But the rising global food prices are threatening the ability of the United Nations World Food Programme and other charities to continue to provide these meals to children. Further efforts to expand existing programs to reach more needy children are also seriously jeopardized by the global food crisis.

School lunch programs are directly in the path of what the World Food Programme calls the "silent tsunami" of escalating food prices. The World Food Programme may be forced to suspend school lunches for 450,000 children in Cambodia unless new funding is found. Many more food aid programs are at risk.

Charities like World Vision, CARE, Food for the Poor, and the World Food Programme carry out school lunch initiatives via McGovern-Dole funding. The Congress is currently considering whether to increase funding for the McGovern-Dole program as part of this year's Farm Bill, with a final decision expected shortly.

The film also includes the Stara School in Kenya, which is run by the charity ChildsLife International. ChildsLife International hopes to expand school feeding projects in the Kibera slum in Kenya.

PTV Productions of Hampton Beach, New Hampshire, produced the video and veteran voice-over talent Craig Burnett provided the narration. For more information about the film please contact the World Food Programme Committee of Ohio.

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About William Lambers

William Lambers is the author of several books including Ending World Hunger: School Lunches for Kids Around the World. This book features over 50 interviews with officials from the UN World Food Programme and other charities discussing school feeding programs that fight child hunger. He is also the author of Nuclear Weapons, The Road to Peace: From the Disarming of the Great Lakes to the Nuclear Test Ban Treaty, Open Skies for Peace, The Spirit of the Marshall Plan: Taking Action Against World Hunger, School Lunches for Kids Around the World, The Roadmap to End Global Hunger, From War to Peace and the Battle of Britain. He is also a writer for the History News Service. His articles have been published by newspapers including the Cincinnati Enquirer, Des Moines Register, the New York Times, San Francisco Chronicle, Buffalo News, San Diego Union Tribune, the Providence Journal, Free Lance-Star (VA), the Bakersfield Californian, the Washington Post, Miami Herald (FL), Chicago Sun-Times, the Patriot Ledger (MA), Charleston Sunday Gazette Mail (WV), the Cincinnati Post, Salt Lake Tribune (UT), North Adams Transcript (MA), Wichita Eagle (KS), Monterey Herald (CA), Athens Banner-Herald (GA) and the Duluth News Journal. His articles also appear on History News Network (HNN) and Think Africa Press. Mr. Lambers is a graduate of the College of Mount St. Joseph in Ohio with degrees in Liberal Arts (BA) and Organizational Leadership (MS). He is also a member of the Feeding America Blogger Council.
  • Solomon T

    It is so sad that this program is being cancelled by politicians who figure poor kids in third world countries don’t vote so why bother. I heard Obama proclaiming that we need to be a leader in providing educational opportunities and poverty aid around the world. But when it comes down to it, he didn’t lift a finger to try to save this program. In the Farm Bill, Agribusiness wins the billions in subsidies and this program gets cut. Politics as usual.