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Come to the Hunger Banquet

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Come to the Hunger Banquet

You’re invited to the Hunger Banquet. Even better, how about hosting your own Hunger Banquet?

For more than 35 years, the Oxfam America Hunger Banquet® has brought attention to the fight against hunger and poverty. Now they’re providing online toolkits and a centralized action hub to create an interactive and transformative experience for today’s hunger activists.

At this very moment, one billion people in the world are chronically hungry. But hunger isn’t just about not having enough food, because there is more than enough food in the world — it’s about access to resources.

As our climate changes and weather becomes less predictable, farming is becoming more difficult. In 2009, hunger and malnutrition contributed to the deaths of more than three million children.

The Hunger Banquet
Anyone can host a Hunger Banquet where participants get to experience firsthand how food is distributed in the world and how our decisions affect others.

Hunger Banquet guests randomly draw tickets assigning them to a high-, middle-, or low-income tier. Each income level receives a corresponding meal:

  • the 15 percent in the high-income tier are served a sumptuous meal
  • the 35 percent in the middle-income section eat a simple meal of rice and beans
  • the 50 percent in the low-income tier have small portions of rice and water

Guests can also assume characterizations that describe the situation of a specific person at the income level to which they’ve been assigned. Guests are invited to share their thoughts after the meal.

Participants are unlikely to depart with a satisfied appetite, but most will come away with a greater understanding of the problem of hunger — and a sincere desire to do something about it.

Visit Oxfam America and download the free toolkit and step-by-step suggestions and sample scripts. You can even check the online calendar for Hunger Banquets in your area.

In Oxfam America’s new short video, Charlyne Yi plays a slacker whose life is transformed when she attends an Oxfam America Hunger Banquet® event.

Next: View OxFam’s video starring Charlyne Yi (Paper Heart, Knocked Up)

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Ann Pietrangelo

Ann Pietrangelo is the author of No More Secs! Living, Laughing & Loving Despite Multiple Sclerosis and Catch That Look: Living, Laughing & Loving Despite Triple-Negative Breast Cancer. She is a freelance writer and member of the American Society of Journalists and Authors. Follow on Twitter @AnnPietrangelo

26 comments

+ add your own
7:15AM PDT on Oct 12, 2010

Wow, this is such an interesting idea, thanks for this article!

1:58AM PDT on Oct 5, 2010

Nice

7:16PM PDT on Sep 30, 2010

Thanks.

7:45AM PDT on Sep 30, 2010

Thanks for this thought provoking
article.

4:28PM PDT on Sep 29, 2010

nice idea thank you

2:25PM PDT on Sep 29, 2010

Thanks.

1:27PM PDT on Sep 29, 2010

Oh; thanking

11:34AM PDT on Sep 29, 2010

My city's Unitarian Universalist church does this every year. Not surprisingly, the invited (largely conservative) city officials and area church-goers rarely show up; facts and compassion disturb their love of fear of brown-skinned humans around the planet.

11:38PM PDT on Sep 28, 2010

thanks

11:37PM PDT on Sep 28, 2010

thanks

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