It’s a happy day today! I always like to remember (particularly in this ugly political season) that it’s just as important to celebrate our victories as decry our problems. The rescue of the 33 miners in Chile made the whole world feel jubilant – and who wasn’t amazed by that feat of engineering and willpower? Mision cumplido!!!
Good things are also going on in Pakistan, where the World Food Programme reports that people are rebuilding, replanting and reclaiming their lives after August monsoon floods buried the country under water.
The crisis is hardly over –the destruction from the floods was immense, submerging about 17 million acres of cropland and killing 200,000 livestock, but the resilient people of Pakistan are working frantically to get their winter crops in the ground and repair homes.
In the northern Swat Valley, the land has dried and people are replanting the fruit orchards for which the region is famous. In central Punjab, the bread basket of Pakistan, whole villages are under construction, with a frenzy of construction in the fields as people rush to get their wheat planted. Though they expect a poor harvest in the spring, farmers have high hopes for the summer crops,as the one good thing about a flood is that it leaves behind a lot of fertile soil. In the southern provinces of Sindh and sparsely populated Balochistan, people are still living in camps and dependent on emergency food supplies, and much of the land is still under water.
The World Food Programme is the largest humanitarian agency fighting hunger worldwide and has been on the ground from the start with 170,000 tons of emergency food assistance for the 20 million Pakistanis originally affected. Now it’s continuing to feed 7 million people a month, while giving people work digging ditches, building homes and planting trees so the country can begin to rebuild. WFP is also supporting supplementary feeding for young children and pregnant and nursing women, promoting kids returning to school with emergency school meals, and providing seeds kits and fertilizer to farmers so they can become self-sufficient again.
My $100 today goes to help people get their heads above ground, from Chile to Pakistan. To join me in supporting World Food Programme, an organization that will provide 90 million people around the world with food assistance in 70 countries and has been working to feed the hungry poor since 1962, click here. Now, don’t you feel happy?
WHAT GIVES NEWS FLASH!
Tomorrow is World Hunger Day — and World Food Programme has a great list of 10 Things You Can Do to join the fight! Click here for games, videos and interactive teaching tools you can use to make your voice HEARD!