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Feeding Boston, changing the world

By Oxfam

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Boston, MA – This Saturday international humanitarian organization Oxfam America joins Lovin’ Spoonfuls, Massachusetts Climate Action Network, Science Club for Girls, Slow Food Boston, and United Nations Association of Greater Boston for an event that draws attention to women on the frontlines of global hunger.

In Boston women are innovators in building a better food system that provides healthy and sustainable choices.  Celebrate women’s achievements here and worldwide in changing the way we grow, eat, and share food so that everyone has enough to eat, always at a panel and dinner event this Saturday, March 10 at 6 PM at Northeastern University. Panelists include Anna Oloshuro Kalaita, Masaai farmer from Tanzania; Ashley Stanley, Founder, Lovin’ Spoonfuls Inc., Boston; Molly Anderson, College of the Atlantic, Partridge Chair in Food & Sustainable Agriculture Systems; Melanie Hardy, Farm Manager, Land’s Sake Farm, Weston; Keely Curliss, Youth Intern, The Food Project, Boston.  The panel will be moderated by Jennifer Hashley, Director, New Entry Sustainable Farming Project, Tufts University.  To RSVP contact hdasilva@oxfamamerica.org.

“Hunger and poverty affect women and men alike, but because women make up the majority of those living below the poverty line, they carry the heaviest burdens,” said Nancy Delaney, community engagement manager at Oxfam America. “While most of us think of hunger as lack of food, it is actually lack of power. We grow enough food to feed everyone, yet hundreds of millions of women continue to go hungry.”

Women produce a majority of the food in many developing countries, but they are often first to go hungry. Around the world 925 million people do not have enough food to eat, and women and young children are especially vulnerable.

In many poor countries, women are the ones who collect food, water and fuel, maintain the home and look after the children. When food is scarce, women often eat less so other family members can have enough. Most of these rural women rely on farming to earn a living. But although women produce most of the world’s food, they often lack access to vital resources, like a steady source of water or a market where they can sell their crops for a fair price. Climate change poses an added threat, with erratic rainfall and droughts that disrupt the growing season and risk further hunger. Meanwhile, women have fewer opportunities to learn new skills, access credit or find well paying jobs. Sixty six percent of the world’s nearly 800 million illiterate adults are women.

“Human rights are not contingent on gender, ethnicity or money in the bank,” said Delaney. “Human rights are fundamental and non-negotiable. In a world where there is still plenty of food, no one should go hungry no matter who she is and where she lives.”