Not so long ago, 46 year old Abadit was given a cow. This cow saved not only hers but her seven children’s lives. You see, Abadit lives in Ethiopia and is one of the many people that go hungry every day. I listened to the story of Abadit’s life, plus a few others who have been saved from the misery of hunger, whilst tasting ugali, a staple of many Ethiopians diets. Ugali consists of maize and water and is the only meal that many can afford. Can you imagine how it tastes? Well I can tell you – imagine putting a spoon of warm mushy water into your mouth. Ugali is completely tasteless and has no nutritional value whatsoever.
We were at the house of a Save the Children campaigner to learn about the upcoming Big IF event that will take place in Hyde Park on Saturday 8th June. (More info here and sign up here). I felt incredibly lucky to be able to enjoy fine food and wine throughout the course of the evening. Daniel Bohan, Head Chef and Emily O’Hare, Head Sommelier from the world famous River Cafe restaurant in Hammersmith took over the kitchen and provided us with a delicious three course feast.
It may sound a bit odd that we were discussing the misfortune of millions as we tucked into a delectable feast but the point is, everyone in the world should be able to enjoy this kind of food and that is what Save the Children is campaigning for. And the charity is the closest it has ever been to making a change.
I was inspired to help. Long have I known about the worlds hunger problems, how could I not after being subjected to ‘feed the world, let them know its Christmas time’ blaring out of the stereo every Christmas for 26 years? But the more you see around you without a real explanation or personal touch, the more desensitised you become to it all. I have seen posters of poor children looking straight into the lens of a camera with sad eyes for years, but it wasn’t until I heard real life stories of people that were saved as little as a week ago that it really sunk in and I think now is my time to do something about it.
I always remember my parents telling me off for leaving food on my plate as a child. “Think about those poor children starving in Ethiopia”, they would say. And it is for that reason that I never leave food on my plate today – without a VERY good reason. I feel incredibly lucky to have the luxury of being able to eat whatever I want, whenever I want, but too many people in this world don’t have that luxury and that needs to change.
I’ll be heading to Hyde Park on 8th June. Why don’t you join me and together we can start the change needed to save millions of people struggling and dying from unnecessary hunger.