Sunday, March 22, 2009

Bloggeraid, and a Challenge.


So while perusing Foodbuzz yesterday, I happened upon Cajun Chef Ryan's Profile. On it, there was a link to Bloggeraid, a group of people who, by their own description are:

"...a growing group of international food bloggers determined to make a difference in aid of world famine. The love of food and community that brings us together drives the compassion of its members to reach out to our world to help those less fortunate than we are. Banded by a mission of helping to make a change in a world where starvation affects such a profound number of people, we will raise money and awareness for the hungry in communities both at home and abroad"

I encourage everyone to check out the site, and seriously consider signing up.

Beyond Bloggeraid, I would love to see my fellow foodies taking action, big or small, to help alleviate hunger and fight malnutrition (either lack of food OR what people overlook, which is obesity resulting from high calorie, low nutrient diets).

Hold a bake sale, auction off your services to cater a dinner party, donate a percentage of your business proceeds to a worthwhile organization, hold a food drive at your work, church, temple, etc. Just do something, anything!

I was 21 when I saw the effects of malnutrition firsthand; I was volunteering in the Dominican Republic, mostly translating for doctors who did not speak Spanish. A baby girl was brought to our makeshift clinic with marasmus-energy-deficient malnutrition-and probable acidosis. She was hospitalized and improved, but without proper aftercare and with a complicated family situation, the hospital-supplied formula was not given to her, and she later died. A completely preventable death of an infant girl.

Nutrition, vaccinations, clean water, aftercare, community health workers...it becomes overwhelming when you think of all the obstacles in place that prevent millions of children from reaching adulthood, but just one action on your part can make the difference in the life of 1 child.

Blog about your efforts or send me your stories at "thealchemistchef at gmail dot com" to publish on my blog. I am available for support, advice and will read what you send me.

Hunger is a worldwide issue, but rarely do you read of hunger and malnutrition in your own backyard. Many elderly people cannot afford or access groceries, pay for medications and household necessities. Families choose cheap, fast food (or may have no other option) over nutritious meals, predisposing their children to obesity, type 2 diabetes and hypertension.

A heart attack, followed by an ambulance ride, ER visit, hospitalization, potential operation and staff, technology and medication costs likely result in around 40,000 dollars billed to your insurance, Medicaid or your own wallet. And that is just 1 instance, chances are you will have other cardiovascular co-morbidities and related costs. 40,000 dollars that could supported a family's food costs for 10 years!

Foodbuzz has somewhere around 10,000 members; if everyone raised 100 dollars, that is ONE MILLION DOLLARS TO FIGHT HUNGER AND MALNUTRITION. Imagine if everyone raised 1,000!

It is great to be aware of an issue, but nothing changes until you change. Do something, do anything, but please, do it now.

8 comments:

  1. Caitin, this is a worthy effort and I will support the cause...

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  2. Caitin, this was wonderfully written article and I was already planning an event but will now think of a way to benefit this cause. Thank you.

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  3. With great appreciation - thank you for taking action. Getting as much coverage as possible is the awareness that's so necessary to mobilize people to action. Your story about the little girl rings far too often in the world of famine.

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  4. Great post! Foodbloggers are an active bunch- I found out about Kiva, where you can make small loans to help people in third world countries sustain themselves from 101 Cookbooks. Everybody can do something. And I love your point about children who are malnourished despite the availability of food. Maybe conducting an awareness campaign and emphasizing cooking at home will help.

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  5. Thank you for being a great voice for those that need our help, but mostly for taking action.

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  6. I am already a member of Bloggeraid. From reading your past posts I see in you a calling, a heart that gives to people that need. You are a wonderful person.

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  7. Hey Caitlin,

    Thank you so much for helping to spread the word on Blogger Aid and the cause. The deadline for recipe entries is soon (03/31/09)

    Culinarily yours,
    CCR =:~)

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