Parliamentarians from across the faiths came together this morning in the Houses of Parliament to celebrate the launch of a major new campaign by Britain’s leading development charities and faith groups.
‘Enough Food for Everyone IF’ is the largest coalition of its kind in the UK since Make Poverty History in 2005. The campaign warns that in a world where there is enough food for everyone, the scandal of children growing up hungry also imposes a grave economic burden on the developing world, costing £78 billion over the next 15 years.
More than 30 parliamentarians and representatives from five of the 109 UK organisations included in the campaign were present at the breakfast, organised by World Jewish Relief. Speakers from the Jewish and Christian faiths shared their own stories of responding to the challenge of global hunger.
The Jewish perspective was given by Louise Ellman, Member of Parliament for Liverpool Riverside.
Henry Grunwald QC OBE, President of World Jewish Relief outlined the campaign to the audience and explained why World Jewish Relief was behind it.
The breakfast was hosted by Labour Shadow Minister for Climate Change Luciana Berger, Member of Parliament for Liverpool Wavertree and Right Reverend John Packer Lord Bishop of Ripon and Leeds.
In its first report launched yesterday the group, which has the backing of philanthropist Bill Gates and Desmond Tutu, warns of the human and economic cost of hunger in a world where there is enough food to feed everyone.
As well as the 937 million children and young people (aged 15-40) whose life chances will be permanently damaged by the impact of childhood hunger by 2025, the report estimates that malnutrition will be costing developing countries an annual $125 billion (£78 billion) in lost economic output by 2030.
Henry Grunwald QC OBE, President of World Jewish Relief said: “World Jewish Relief is excited to support this groundbreaking campaign to tackle world hunger. Food has always been central to Jewish life and traditions and for people go to bed hungry when there is enough produced to go around is not right. This morning’s breakfast has been a fantastic opportunity for faith groups and charities to come together and pledge their communities’ support for this campaign.”
Luciana Berger MP said: “It is a scandal that in a world where we have so much, 1 in 8 people still go to bed hungry. That’s why I’m delighted to be backing the Enough Food for Everyone IF campaign – we really do have the opportunity to make 2013 a historic year by showing global leadership at the G8 and beyond.”
The Rt Rev John Packer Lord Bishop of Ripon and Leeds said: “It is a shocking that in a world where we have so much, 1 in 8 people still go to bed hungry. That’s why I’m delighted to show my support and am glad that churches and faith communities up and down the country are backing the Enough Food for Everyone IF campaign – we really do have the opportunity to make 2013 an historic year by showing global leadership at the G8 and beyond.”
Click here to see photos of the event.
Click here to learn more about the IF campaign.