The Hunger Project

From Academic Kids

The Global Hunger Project describes itself as "a global, strategic organization committed to the sustainable end of world hunger". In Africa, Asia and Latin America, the Hunger Project has the stated intent of empowering grassroots people to achieve lasting progress in health, education, nutrition and family income.

The Hunger Project started in 1977 as one of many hunger-related organizations founded in the wake of the first World Food Conference in Rome. That conference discussed for the first time the notion of "ending" hunger (rather than alleviating hunger). Many expressed frustration that conventional approaches and conventional thinking did not suffice to meet the challenge. The Hunger Project sees itself as "designed to challenge conventional thinking, and pioneer strategies which could address the root causes that gave rise to wide-spread hunger and poverty".

Werner Erhard, one of the founders of The Hunger Project, also founded est, which formed the basis for the techniques used by Landmark Education. Some participants in the programs have noted similarities in the philosophies and memberships of the groups. However representatives of The Hunger Project have taken pains to point out that Erhard ended his association with them in 1990.

By the early 1980s, The Hunger Project had established itself in ten countries.

In its early years, various international studies concluded that the ending of hunger lacked the required "political will." From 1977 until 1990 The Hunger Project focused most of its efforts on education and advocacy, primarily in the developed world. By the mid-1980s, and particularly in the face of continent-wide famine in Africa, it became clear to the Project that - while necessary - greater political will in the developed world did not suffice. The Hunger Project diagnosed a need for change in the policies and development methodologies applied on the ground in developing countries as well. Immediately following the 1990 World Summit for Children - a high-water-mark in mobilizing the political will to end hunger - The Hunger Project "redesigned all its programs to focus on mobilizing the leadership, pioneering the strategies and catalyzing the campaigns of action in the developing world needed to bring hunger to an end".

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