Answer Hunger
With Hope
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Answer Hunger With Hope

“Our only chance of lifting millions of people out of hunger is to act together, urgently and with solidarity.” –– UN Secretary-General António Guterres, 2022

  • World hunger is rising. The number of people on our planet with insufficient food has more than doubled since 2019.

  • This crisis is complex and the need is staggering. But we cannot turn away from our global neighbours. We’ve created this digital experience to help you understand and connect with the individual people and stories behind the statistics.

  • You can make a difference. You can answer hunger with hope.

  • Compassion is a Christian child development charity with over 70 years’ experience that seeks to put love in action and release children from poverty in Jesus’ name.

Answer hunger with hope.

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Contributors
Contributors

Compassion is a global network of over 40 countries that has served vulnerable children and families for more than seven decades. We exist to see children released from poverty in Jesus’ name.

With special thanks to the Compassion Collective research panel for your insights. You have helped shape the creation of this website.

Compassion Australia
  • Clare Steele
    CEO
  • Amanda Viviers
    Executive Director
  • Jono Kirk
    Executive Director
  • Josie Corben
    Creative Direction
  • Karina Mitchelson
    Campaign Manager
  • Paul Vaartjes
    Insights Specialist
  • Andrew Barker
    Narrative Lead
  • Rachel Howlett
    Narrative Specialist
  • Daniel Bracken
    Film Lead
  • Marcus Wong
    Film Specialist
  • Sidhara Udalagama
    Voice Over
  • Brentan Nelson
    Solution Architect
  • Mark Payne
    Head of Risk and Compliance
  • Legal Officer
    Daniel Toohey
Tomorrow Happens
  • Nate Zerk
    Microsite Design/Development
  • Leandre Zerk
    Concepting
  • Alex Fesenko
    Back-End Development
Compassion International
  • Palamanga Ouali
    Regional Vice President Africa Region
  • Brynn Paine
    Snr MarCom Specialist
  • Silas Irungu
    Africa Regional Manager
  • Ella Tan
    Asia Regional Manager
  • Isi Salazar
    Central America Regional Manager
  • Jehojakim Sangare
    Photojournalist Burkina Faso
  • Odessa Balasingh
    Photojournalist Sri Lanka
  • Tigist Gizachew
    Photojournalist Ethiopia
  • Erick Jura
    Photojournalist Haiti
  • Kevin Ouma
    Photojournalist Kenya
Compassion Burkina Faso
  • Sanata
    Partnership Facilitator
  • Adjaratou
    Partnership Facilitator
  • Emmanuel
    Project Director
  • Eliakim
    Project Staff Member
  • Gervais
    Pastor
  • Colette
    Program Participant
  • Cheick
    Program Participant
  • Ignace
    Caregiver
  • Adama Pierre
    Church Partnership Coordinator
  • Djibril
    Church Partnership Coordinator
Compassion Sri Lanka
  • Senthoory
    Center Manager
  • Rajasekar
    Center Manager
  • Christina
    Tutor
  • Seethaluxshumi
    Tutor
  • Prakash
    Program Participant
  • Indujan
    Program Participant
  • Susikala
    Caregiver
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Frequently Asked Questions
Frequently Asked Questions

Who is Compassion?

Compassion is a global network of over 40 countries that has served vulnerable children and families living in poverty for more than 70 years. We exist to see children released from poverty in Jesus’ name.

How will you share the messages of hope?

Messages of hope will be collectively shared with our global neighbours who live and work in the Compassion partner countries most affected by the global food crisis. They will be able to view and share the videos with friends, family and colleagues to bring encouragement and hope during hard times.

How can I share this experience with others?

You can use your voice to raise awareness of the global food crisis and bring urgent relief where its needed most. You can use social media, email or any other ways you can think of to share this website with friends, family and colleagues today. Please encourage them to upload their own message of hope. For social media posts, use the hashtag #AnswerHungerWithHope

How can I be praying for children and their families during the global food crisis?

Thank you for joining us in prayer for those affected by food insecurity.

  1. Pray for the provision of nutritious food for the children and families we serve.
  2. Pray for protection and relief from extreme weather events.
  3. Pray for peace and stability for those experiencing violence, unrest, war and displacement.
  4. Pray for a globally productive growing season.
  5. Pray for strength and wisdom for staff and local partners as they respond to the needs around them.

Why can’t I find my message of hope on the website?

Thanks so much for submitting your video. New messages will be reviewed and added to this website daily. Different videos will be shown on different days, so check back later to see if you can find yours.

Can I request for my message of hope to be removed?

Yes, please email our team at compassion@compassion.com.au or call 1300 22 44 53 and we can take down your content.

How can I contact the owner of this site?

Compassion Australia
compassion@compassion.com.au
1300 22 44 53
30 Warabrook Boulevard,
Warabrook NSW 2304 Australia
ABN: 67 001 692 566

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Additional Resources
Additional Resources
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What is the Global Food Crisis?
What is the Global Food Crisis?

Our global neighbours are facing an unprecedented and life-threatening food crisis.

The number of people on our planet with insufficient food has more than doubled in just three years, creating a humanitarian emergency we cannot ignore.

There isn’t a shortage of food in the world. Instead, the blame falls on the skyrocketing cost of food and its unequal and disrupted distribution. At least 345 million people worldwide currently face acute food insecurity—a 250 per cent increase since 2019.

What is food insecurity?

According to The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organisation: Food Insecurity Scale, severe food insecurity is when a person hasn’t eaten for a day or more.

Crisis Categories
Next Question
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Why is there a global food crisis?
Why is there a global food crisis?

The current food crisis is caused by intensifying global events: conflict, increased costs, climate issues and COVID-19.

Climate

  • From droughts to hurricanes, extreme weather events have intensified food insecurity and disrupted agriculture production.
  • Weather extremes pushed over 23 million people into acute food insecurity in 2021 alone.
  • Countries like Ethiopia, Kenya and Somalia are approaching a fourth growing season without rain.

Conflict

  • Conflict is the biggest driver of hunger globally, responsible for over 60 per cent of people currently facing food insecurity.
  • The war in Ukraine has disrupted the world’s access to wheat and fertiliser as Russia and Ukraine are some of the biggest suppliers of these resources.
  • Countries like Ethiopia, Burkina Faso and Colombia have faced debilitating internal conflict and violence. Nineteen months of war in Ethiopia left 13 million people needing urgent humanitarian food assistance.

Costs

  • Rising inflation means families in poverty spend more on less food, placing them in desperate situations.
  • Households in emerging economies are spending an average 25 per cent of their budgets on food—up to 40 per cent in sub-Saharan Africa and 60 per cent in Haiti.

COVID-19

  • Loss of work and isolation rules during the COVID-19 pandemic have crushed livelihoods.
  • Economic shocks from COVID-19 have widened gender gaps, delayed education and medical care and stripped income from families in poverty—all of which heighten food insecurity. 

Crushing Inflation: Agossou and Kayissan’s Story

This young family pray that, through their children, their life situation will change. 

Next Question
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Where is the crisis happening?
Where is the crisis happening?

Rising food costs are felt worldwide, but the World Food Programme (WFP) reports that there are 48 countries categorised as hunger hotspots.
Nine of Compassion’s program countries are experiencing severe food insecurity:

  • Burkina Faso
  • Colombia
  • Ethiopia
  • Ghana
  • Haiti
  • Kenya
  • Sri Lanka
  • Togo
  • Uganda
80.1%
of the population cannot afford a healthy diet
26%
of children under 5 have stunted growth
3.9M
people are facing severe food insecurity
Diet
includes sorghum, nuts, rice and vegetables

Burkina Faso is one of the poorest countries in the world. Hunger is caused by a complex and agonising mix of crises, with internal conflict mostly to blame. Ongoing violence since 2016 has left over two million Burkinabés displaced and with little means of rebuilding their lives. 

26.5%
of the population cannot afford a healthy diet
11%
of children under 5 have stunted growth
7.3M
people are facing severe food insecurity
Diet
includes potato, chicken, beans and fruit

In Colombia, food security’s enemy is conflict. For the past 50 years, internal conflict has seen at least five million Colombians displaced by violence. Nearly half the population live in poverty as a result. The nation’s food bank has labelled hunger levels as critical.  

86.8%
of the population cannot afford a healthy diet
35%
of children under 5 have stunted growth
22.6M
people are facing severe food insecurity
Diet
includes teff, sorghum, vegetables and meat

Decades of instability, famine and widespread disease have left millions of Ethiopians living in extreme poverty. Soaring food prices mean the gap between income and what a family’s money can buy grows wider each day. Infant and child mortality rates are high and malnutrition is common. 

61.2%
of the population cannot afford a healthy diet
14%
of children under 5 have stunted growth
1.8M
people are facing severe food insecurity
Diet
includes cassava, plantains, maize and fish

The cost of food in Ghana jumps higher each month. Hunger is worse in the north, where persistent drought has inflamed inequality between the north and south. For Ghanaian children in poverty, the wait between meals grows longer, and the threat of trafficking and forced labour draw nearer. 

85.9%
of the population cannot afford a healthy diet
20%
of children under 5 have stunted growth
5.2M
people are facing severe food insecurity
Diet
includes rice, wheat, sweet potatoes and bananas

Haiti faces a perfect storm of disasters: the lingering effects of COVID-19, devastating earthquakes, ongoing political unrest and rampant inflation. Each severe in their own right, the combination of these adversities has created a humanitarian crisis in Haiti unlike any other. 

81.1%
of the population cannot afford a healthy diet
19%
of children under 5 have stunted growth
14M
people are facing severe food insecurity
Diet
includes maize, rice, beans and potato

Kenya is facing its worst drought in 40 yearsfour consecutive rainy seasons have failed throughout the Horn of Africa. Crops and livestock have been decimated, and local children and their families walk for days in search of water to drink.     

49%
of the population cannot afford a healthy diet
16%
of children under 5 have stunted growth
4.9M
people are facing food insecurity
Diet
includes rice, fish, vegetables and fruit

Since Sri Lanka defaulted on its debts in early 2022, the entire country has experienced dire fuel shortages, daily electricity cuts and queues of thousands waiting to buy basic groceries. This island nation is also highly susceptible to devastating natural disasters like tsunamis. 

55%
of the population live below the poverty line
81%
of people lack access to basic sanitation
23.8%
of children under 5 are chronically malnourished
Diet
includes maize porridge, okra, sweet potato and rice

In Togo, prolonged droughts and disease epidemics have a devastating effect on livelihoods and access to food. Togo is also highly dependent on imports of food and other resources. International crises quickly exacerbate hunger for Togolese people. 

82.2%
of the population cannot afford a healthy diet
28%
of children under 5 have stunted growth
10.6M
people are facing severe food insecurity
Diet
includes cassava, bananas, beans and rice

Many Ugandans continue to deal with the aftermath of the brutal two-decade long civil war which terrorised the country’s north until 2006 and created a severe humanitarian crisis. Since then, prolonged drought, pests and diseases have choked agricultural production. 

Going to bed hungry

As the sun sets over the sand dunes of La Guajira, Marina tells her six children to go to bed. It’s their dinnertime and the family haven’t eaten all day. The sooner they fall asleep, the sooner they’ll be distracted from their growling stomachs. 

As the sun sets over the sand dunes of La Guajira, Marina tells her six children to go to bed. It’s their dinnertime and the family haven’t eaten all day. The sooner they fall asleep, the sooner they’ll be distracted from their growling stomachs. 

Marina is the sole income earner for her family. She picks up extra work wherever she can, washing dishes and cleaning homes. No matter how hard Marina works, it seems impossible to keep up with rising food prices. At the start of 2022, half a kilogram of meat cost her 9,500 pesos. By the end of the year, the same amount cost more than double that, and meat was pushed well out of her budget. 

Enis is a pastor at the local Compassion child development centre where Marina’s 10-year-old son Santiago is registered. “When children come here, we can provide them at least one meal for that day,” says Enis. “If they don’t have food at home, they will at least have a nutritious lunch at the centre.” 

With help from Compassion, the church also delivers food baskets to children’s homes so their families don’t miss out.  

“Thank you for helping children who ask God for food—and hope for Him to respond,” says Enis. “You are bringing hope to children and families.” 

Next Question
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Who is it affecting?
Who is it affecting?

Up to 828 million people—nearly ten per cent of the world’s population—go to bed hungry every night.

Each of us is affected by increasing food prices, but none more so than children already living in poverty who face malnutrition that can steal their lives.

How are children in poverty affected?

As food prices climb, so do hunger and malnutrition in young children. A child in poverty begins to suffer from severe wasting every 60 seconds, according to UNICEF.

The impact of childhood malnutrition is catastrophic and leads to:

  • Growth stunting and wasting
  • Poor academic performance and intellectual development
  • Increased prevalence of attention deficit disorders
  • Diabetes, cardiovascular problems and cancer later in life
  • Child marriage, as girls are offered in exchange for dowries
  • Child labour, as children leave school early to support their families
  • Premature death

A severely undernourished child is up to 11 times more likely to die of common illnesses.
—UNICEF, 2022

Ayitevi and Aboni

“Hearing my children cry out of hunger is very painful,” says Ayitevi, a mother living in Togo. Her husband Aboni feels the same, often losing sleep over their situation. “It gives me so much sorrow when we cannot afford food,” he says. 

“Hearing my children cry out of hunger is very painful,” says Ayitevi, a mother living in Togo. Her husband Aboni feels the same, often losing sleep over their situation. “It gives me so much sorrow when we cannot afford food,” he says. 

With the significant increase in food prices in Togo, this young couple can no longer meet their family’s basic needs. Aboni resorted to farming when costs first shot up. But the price of fertiliser quickly skyrocketed and his efforts to grow crops were unsuccessful.  

This brave couple say their hearts break when their children ask why there’s nothing to eat.  

“The only thing I can do is bless water, give it to them to drink and reassure them that brighter days will come,” says Ayitevi.  

Aboni holds onto hope that food prices will one day come down and their suffering will be lessened. 

But in the meantime, their local church has stepped into the gap.  

In partnership with Compassion, their church is providing the family with lifesaving support, including food packs and financial assistance for their business. Their young daughter has been registered in the Child Sponsorship Program and, for this, the couple say they are grateful to God. 

“God preserves our lives and wakes us up to meet the next day,” says Ayitevi. “My prayer and hope is that through this very child, God will change our story.” 

Next Question
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How can I help / How is Compassion helping?
How can I help / How is Compassion helping?

Hope is not lost. The local and global community are taking action against hunger.

Compassion is leading a local-first response to the global food crisis through partnerships with over 8,500 local churches across four continents.

The local church has decades of established community trust and is best positioned to assist in this crisis—it has been there before, will be there during and will remain long after the crisis.

Our church partners are responding in two ways:

  1. Short-term aid. Meeting vulnerable families’ immediate nutritional needs by delivering food packages.
  2. Long-term solutions. Equipping families with seeds, fertiliser, livestock and agricultural training to stop ongoing hunger.

You can be part of the solution.

You can help ensure children and families in poverty have food to eat during the global food crisis and for the years to come.

Donate Donate

No lunchbox, no school

In the small Ethiopian town of Dera, Birtukan likes to rise early to prepare her granddaughter’s lunch box for school. She knows that 7-year-old Yeresen needs nutritious food to focus during class and have the energy to play with her friends. 

But soaring food prices are choking Birtukan’s budget, and the gap between what she earns and what her money can buy is growing wider each day. Like so many other local families, Birtukan is forced to choose which meal to cut out each day—breakfast, lunch or dinner?

“I don’t want Yeresen to go to school without food while her friends are eating,” says Birtukan. “It’s a difficult choice, but sometimes it’s the only choice.”  

Staff and volunteers from the local church grew concerned that Yeresen, and many other children like her, were missing out on school because they didn’t have enough to eat. So they took matters into their own hands. Using funds of their own and through support from Compassion, the local church began providing lunch for every child registered at their centre.  

Birtukan and the other caregivers were overwhelmed with gratitude. They still rise early to help prepare food for their families, but now they take turns to cook a nourishing meal for one another’s children to eat at school. 

No child should worry about missing school because they don’t have lunch,” says Project Director Bayush. “These little children deserve to be in school. They deserve to thrive.” 

Next Question
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Jemi Jemi
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Messages of Hope:
Click to hear messages of support for those on the frontlines
Messages of Hope:
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Messages from the frontline:
Click to hear messages from those fighting hunger
Messages from the frontline:
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Answer Hunger
With Hope

Deliver a message of hope to encourage your global neighbours fighting hunger.

The human voice is powerful, meaningful and life-giving. All of us want to hear we aren’t alone, especially when faced with adversity.

Follow the steps to record your video message of hope.

1
Record a video
  • Up to 30 seconds long using your phone or computer webcam.
  • Be yourself and keep it real—it doesn’t need to be perfect.
  • Share a prayer, a song, an encouraging word or something else.
2
Upload your video
3
Spread the message
Select a file
(max 30 sec / 200 MB)

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We thank you for uploading video messages of support. A changing selection of these videos will be displayed at different times (along with the first name and country of the video provider). We check videos before displaying them and not all videos can be displayed. This checking does not mean the videos that are displayed represent our views or values.

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Thank you for sharing your message of hope.

Your message will be shared with our global neighbours on the frontlines of fighting hunger.

New messages will be reviewed and added to this website daily. Different videos will be shown on different days, so check back later to see if you can find yours.

Your voice fights hunger

Use your voice to raise awareness of the global food crisis and bring urgent relief.

Share this website with friends, family and colleagues today so they can upload their own message of hope.

#AnswerHungerWithHope