Students Working to End World Hunger
Every day, I work with amazing students and teachers across the United States to educate, raise awareness, and raise funds for our lifesaving work around the world. I frequently speak to students who know that they want to help end world hunger but don’t know how to start. The stories below prove that students (no matter how young!) can have a real impact on the lives of people around the world and that they play a vital role in our work to end global hunger.
Anuj Thakkar with his community service award for his Raleigh Walk-a-Thon.
For the last two years Anuj Thakkar, a 14-year-old student at Raleigh Charter High School in North Carolina, has organized the Raleigh Action Against Hunger Walk-a-Thon, a community-wide fundraising walk dedicated to ending world hunger. This annual event is student-led and has brought hundreds of people from his community together to help those in need around the world. In recognition of his incredible achievements, he was recently awarded the Aapo Beepo Bhava Award for outstanding community service by HumSub, an organization that is dedicated to sharing the social and cultural traditions of India with residents in Raleigh, Durham, Cary and Chapel Hill. Anuj has become one of our strongest ambassadors in his community and although it is still ten months away, we are already working on next year’s Walk-a-Thon together.
Milwaukee Jewish Day School
The Milwaukee Jewish Day School students who partnered with Action Against Hunger.
Every year Mike Hinkens, a dedicated middle school social studies teacher at Milwaukee Jewish Day School, and his students learn about the world around them through geography and a thorough study of wealth disparity, poverty, and the developmental challenges that many nations face. As they learn about these topics, the students choose a specific issue to focus their attention on with the intention of learning more about it, raising awareness in their school and community about the issue, and raising funds.
Last year, they focused their efforts on malnutrition in Africa and chose us as their nonprofit partner for the year. Through their own nonprofit, Voice of the Children, these students created projects to raise money, raise awareness, and help change the world their own way. Their amazing efforts raised enough funds to treat more than 440 malnourished children! It’s clear that Mr. Hinkens and his students will continue to do great things in the future and will have impact on the lives of many children around the world.
Lycée Français de New York
Lycée Français de New York students at their Race Against Hunger. Photo: Lycée Français de New York
This fall, more than 100 first graders at Lycée Français de New York (LFNY), one of the premier bilingual French schools in New York, are learning about global hunger and working together to raise money for Action Against Hunger. I was lucky enough to present to LFNY students about how we are working to end world hunger and learn about what drew them to our cause. The students’ interests were quite varied—for example, they were fascinated with how our experts treat malnourished children, they wanted to learn more about how providing a cow to a family can help that family overcome poverty and malnutrition, and they asked how we obtain clean water from the ground using wells and boreholes. In the spirit of service learning, the students then acted on their new knowledge by running their Race Against Hunger and collecting donations per lap from their friends and families. The gym teachers, who organized the Race, put together an obstacle course for the students to run laps through, and every student finished panting from all their laps and with a big smile on their face.
These three vignettes illustrate that we are at the forefront of developing a future generation of globally-minded citizens, young people who have a passion for helping others and a drive to end world hunger. My team members and I work hand-in-hand with students and teachers to give them the tools they need to have an impact on the lives of children around the world, and we are developing new engagement opportunities for students every day!
If you or a student in your life would like to join our growing community of hunger-fighters, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org, and let’s work together to change the world!