Decent diet is a 'human right', says bishop

Published 13 May 2013  |  

The Bishop of Swansea and Brecon is encouraging people to give what they can to Christian Aid this week and help to end global hunger.

Bishop John Davies is chair of Christian Aid Wales Committee and a member of the Board of Trustees of Christian Aid.

The development agency's biggest fundraising campaign of the year, Christian Aid Week, got underway on Sunday with the theme 'bite back at hunger' to highlight the fact that one in eight people are still going to bed hungry despite there being enough food in the world for everybody.

Bishop Davies said it was a "scandal" that a third of all child deaths in developing countries were linked to hunger. He is urging people to support Christian Aid Week.

"'What shall I have to eat?' is a question most of us will ask at some point each day; and for most of us, the options are pretty varied – we have a huge range of choice. Even when thinking about something as basic as a loaf of bread we have to admit that the range of choice is sometimes baffling," he said.

"Equally baffling is the fact that hunger is the biggest health risk in the world today. It kills more people worldwide than AIDS, malaria and TB combined, and in developing countries, a third of all child deaths are linked to hunger. This is a scandal.

"Just like a roof over one's head, access to a decent diet is a basic human right. Healthy diets make healthy people who build healthy communities."

Christian Aid Week is Britain's longest running door-to-door fundraising week and thousands of households will have a little red envelope pushed through their doors.

Bishop Davies is encouraging people to be generous in helping communities achieve a life-sustaining diet.

He praised the thousands of volunteers who deliver and collect the Christian Aid envelopes for their "act of loving witness".

"It goes to the heart of our faith, and puts the charity's work into the public eye. In doing what they do, those volunteers stand alongside some of the world's neediest people, regardless of their religion or race. They are God's love made visible," he said.

Cathrin Daniel, Head of Christian Aid in Wales, said the money raised would help poor communities meet their immediate food needs by adapting to climate change and securing land rights, enabling them to grow more food.

"By taking part in Christian Aid Week people here in Wales can make a real difference to those trapped in poverty in developing countries across the world," she said.

The theme of 'bite back at hunger' ties in with the IF campaign to end global hunger. Christian Aid is one of the more than 100 development and faith organisations that have come together for the campaign calling on the UK Government to take action on hunger.

Daniel added: "Christian Aid is encouraging everyone, including the churches to get involved in the IF campaign, which aims to tackle the root causes of hunger and ensure everyone has enough to eat in the future."

Christian Aid is asking people to pray for the organising throughout Christian Aid Week. Prayers can be shared via text to 70788 or the web at http://ow.ly/kD2jZ

To donate to Christian Aid Week online visit www.caweek.org or text 'GIVE' to 78866 to give £5.

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