Contact: Eileen O’Gorman Phone: (o) 480-609-7759 Email: eogorman@fh.

org

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE (c) 314 -323-4979

Food for the Hungry Asks Obama to Protect Life-Saving International Food Aid Benefits of food aid include effective programs abroad and jobs at home
PHOENIX (April 4, 2013) – Citing decades of successful programs, Food for the Hungry (FH) is one of 71 organizations urging the Obama administration to support continued funding for U.S. food aid abroad. Twenty-one senators have also signed a bipartisan letter asking the administration to sustain funding for Food for Peace (PL 480) and Food for Progress. The 71-member coalition sent a letter to President Obama stating that “food aid programs have enjoyed strong bipartisan support for nearly 60 years because they work.” It adds, “Our country has the largest and most diverse, reliable and effective food assistance program in the world. Food for Peace and Food for Progress form the backbone of those efforts.” David Evans, U.S. President of Food for the Hungry, spoke about proposed cuts to food aid saying, “Food for Peace and Food for Progress are proven programs for addressing global food insecurity. This is about much more than handouts and more than ‘giving a person a fish.’ These programs ‘teach people how to fish.’ And they have a track record of proven results.” USAID reported that Food for Peace in Ethiopia, which FH implements, help 7.6 million avoid severe hunger during the recent food crisis. This translates to $100 million dollars saved in emergency food aid. Since 2008, FH has served more than 675,000 people living in extreme poverty in D.R. Congo, Sudan, Mozambique, Ethiopia and Bolivia through food aid programs. The programs include—but also go far beyond—supplying grain and vegetable oil for vulnerable populations. The programs use strategies such as “food for work.” Beneficiaries take part in activities such as terracing hillsides to increase land for local food production and are paid with U.S. commodities such as grain that are in chronic short supply locally. This helps families in the developing world to make it through annual “hungry seasons” while building the ability for communities to become self-sufficient and produce food locally. The senators’ letter to President Obama pointed out that American agriculture is one of the few U.S. business sectors to produce a trade surplus, exporting $108 billion in farm goods in 2010 and suggest continued support for an area of the U.S. economy that is growing. “Over 60 years of participating in international food aid, the U.S. has developed a pipeline for U.S. commodity shipments which would be at risk if food aid ended,” Evans said. “More people will be hungry if this infrastructure is dismantled.” FH acknowledges the national security benefits of food aid, as well. “Bags of grain and cans of cooking oil are shipped all over the world through these programs,” Evans said. “I have walked into some of the most remote communities imaginable and seen, lying there before me, an aluminum can with an American flag painted on its side. This is how we express our good will as a country to those in need. We build peaceful bridges while empowering vulnerable people to overcome poverty.” ### Founded in 1971, Food for the Hungry provides emergency relief and long-term development programs in more than 20 countries to help the world's most vulnerable people. Learn more by visiting www.fh.org. Social connections include www.facebook.com/foodforthehungry and www.twitter.com/food4thehungry.

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