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Famine in Somalia: Realities of a Broken Food System

With ongoing drought and food shortages across East Africa, the United Nations has declared a famine in parts of Somalia.  The UN claims that "10 million people are on the verge of starvation" and Oxfam America reports that millions in neighboring Kenya and Ethiopia also struggle as thousands of refugees pour into refugee camps.  This crisis has been the culmination of multiple factors.  The lack of rainfall, for instance, has sliced harvests in half across Somalia and caused mass livestock losses for many communities already living in poverty.  

Immediate humanitarian aid is needed to alleviate starvation and rising displacement across Eastern Africa.  Yet, Oxfam America also emphasizes the need for a long term vision in dealing with the famine.  Small farmers like those living in the drought-stricken areas of Somalia, for example, need support to develop sustainable farming economies in times of climate change.  Stable and robust crop yields mean security for millions that rely on sustenance farming to support themselves and their family.  Success for small farmers can mean a global stabilization of food prices and fewer conflicts in competition over resources and markets.  

This famine demonstrates that we have reached a place of no return; it is time to address our broken food system.  Let's not support more of the same policies that continue to leave 1 in 7 people chronically hungry and unable to feed their children.  Let's ensure that everyone has the opportunity to grow food justly and a seat at the table in our future. 

Photo Source:  BBC News


Join us July 13th at our montly meeting!!!

July is here already - summer is half over and we still want to do so much more.  Please join us at our monthly meeting on July 13th at Barnes and Noble Cafe, DePaul Center, 1 E. Jackson Blvd., Chicago, IL.  6:30 pm - 7:30 pm. 

This weekend we are tabling at the Dave Matthews Event!  8/7 we have a table scheduled for the Glenwood Sunday Market - We are firming up plans for Arlington Heights - and let's not forget our trip to the farm!  So come and bring all of your great ideas because we want to hear them all.

We will also be discussing how biofuels play a big part of the new Oxfam Grow campaign and how we can get involved with communication to our Senators and Representatives.

See you Wednesday the 13th. 

First Person: Voices, video, and photos from Oxfam's fight against poverty