Changing the World…. One Project at a Time: Fighting Hunger
EA/UNCW Think-Care-Act Project Partnership.
EA/UNCW Think-Care-Act Project Partnership.
Dr. Elizabeth O. Crawford, an education professor at University of North Carolina Wilmington, and Susan Gelber Cannon, a middle school teacher, author, and developer of Think-Care-Act Projects, are pleased to present our second collaborative year of sharing Think-Care-Act-Projects [TCAP]. Our EA/UNCW Think-Care-Act Project Partnership allows Episcopal Academy sixth graders and Dr. Crawford’s senior UNCW pre-service education majors to consider personal qualities and talents, identify passions for social change, and act to change the world for the better. Through video sessions, my students and those of Dr. Crawford have inspired and encouraged each other to make a difference.
Below, and for previous four blog posts, you will read future teachers’ guest blogs about their TCAPs, with links for research and teaching suggestions. Happy reading and thinking, caring, and acting!—Sue Cannon
Fighting Hunger: A Look Into The Problem Of World Hunger
Think-Care-Act Project by Chelsea Anderson and Jenna DeHart
University of North Carolina at Wilmington, May 2016
Food is one of the major necessities needed for life. Without food, individuals do not have the nutrition needed to concentrate and focus, or the energy needed for survival. Without food, there is no living. For our Think-Care-Act Project we researched why there are so many people hungry across the globe and how educators can teach about this world issue to their students and get them to become young solutionaries to this pressing problem.
Causes of Hunger
The primary cause of hunger is poverty. Individuals living in poverty often cannot afford healthy foods or have access to transportation to get to the food. Lacking empowerment and resources to escape it, individuals find it hard to escape poverty (World Food Programme, 2016). In developing farming countries, for example, farmers cannot afford seeds to plant crops to feed their families (World Food Programme, 2016). The hungry usually do not have access to other components of life such as education, water, and land, and therefore the cycle of hunger is not broken easily.
The world has stores of 2.9 trillion pounds of food, enough to feed every individual in all nations twice. However, there is no explanation of where all of this food is going, considering how many people are hungry (Royte, 2016). In developing countries, much food is lost because there are no sturdy roads, adequate refrigeration, or steady climates to keep the food fresh. In developed nations, however, there is a different story. Restaurants serve too much food, individuals forget about leftovers in the refrigerator, and food is being thrown out before the expiration date (Royte, 2016). Food is wasted in spite of the fact that hunger exists.
Teaching about World Hunger
The first action step that should be taken when it comes to addressing world hunger is education. Students, especially, do not realize how big of an issue hunger is unless it impacts them directly or they are told about it. Students will develop a personal interest in the problem if they become passionate about becoming solutionaries toward the issue. It is important to show students the issue at hand either through personal narratives, children’s literature, web resources, or videos. It is also necessary to show students other children who are taking action on the same problem and becoming a solutionary. This will inspire students to see that age has nothing to do with being able to take a stand on an issue. A lesson on this issue should include having students come up with solutions on what they and their families can do to reduce the number of hungry people, starting in their own communities.
Our Action Plans
Working as a pair, we focused our actions differently. Jenna placed more of an emphasis on education. She taught a lesson to third grade students to show them that hunger is a prominent issue affecting individuals and families around the world and locally. Jenna and the class then came up with solutions that they can do individually or with their families to help with the problem.
Chelsea’s approach was geared towards supporting global organizations that focus on finding innovative solutions to the problem of world hunger. She directed a youth group with middle and high school youth in Morganton, North Carolina in their participation in World Vision’s “30-Hour Famine.” Chelsea helped organize and promote the youth group’s participation in the program and help them receive sponsors as they fasted for thirty hours and worked together by participating in team-building games and simulations of how people must survive when they must support themselves when they are hungry and living in impoverished areas. She was able to Skype in with the youth group throughout the thirty hours to support and encourage them for their participation.
Chelsea noted how many of the students shared how excited they were to be able to make an impact on the world through their participation. They now had a greater outlook on what some people have to deal with and do to survive in the world. She shared that the youth group raised over $400 to support World Vision and also donated over 100 pounds of food to their local soup kitchen.
Teaching Resources and References
Information on Think-Care-Act Projects:
Seven great lessons to teach kids about hunger and food insecurity. (2013, September 10). Retrieved from http://kidworldcitizen.org/2013/09/09/great-lessons-teach-kids-about-hunger-food-insecurity/
Milway, K. S., & Fernandes, E. (2008). one hen: how one small loan made a big
difference. Toronto: Kids Can Press.
Suggested Books. (n.d.). Retrieved from http://www.kidscanmakeadifference.org/program-description
Top 10 books to help kids understand hunger - Lasso the Moon. (2012, September 13).
Retrieved from Royte, E. (2016, March 01). http://letslassothemoon.com/2012/09/13/book-on-hunger/
How 'ugly' fruits and vegetables can help solve world hunger.
10 ways to stop world hunger. (2013, October 02). Retrieved from
What causes hunger? | WFP | United Nations World Food Programme - Fighting Hunger Worldwide. (2016). Retrieved from https://www.wfp.org/hunger/causes