Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Oxfam America Hopes to Use Hunger Banquets to Raise Awareness about Famine in East Africa

Oxfam America has entered a contest sponsored by the U.S. Agency for International Development to raise awareness about hunger and poverty. The contest is part of the FWD campaign.  The winner of the contest will receive a grant of $5,000 for the awareness effort.  Today is the last day to vote.  (Don't you wish all these worthy entries would get funded?)

Oxfam's plan is to promote the concept of hunger banquets and tie this in to the famine in East Africa.  (Check out the video and the information below).   And even if Oxfam America does not get the grant, they will continue forward with their efforts.  "We have some exciting plans for Women's Day in March," said organizer Brian Rawson.

The Idea

Five major cities across the US will host an Oxfam America Hunger Banquet ® on the same night. These events will be free to the public. Live video feed will connect each city and be streamed online. The goal is to raise awareness of the crisis in E. Africa through an impactful dining experience.

The Plan

At an Oxfam America Hunger Banquet ®, guests randomly draw tickets that assign them to different income levels, based on statistics about the number of people living in poverty. Depending on where they sit, some receive a filling dinner, while others eat a simple meal or share sparse portions of rice and water. Following the meal, participants are encouraged to share their reactions from the night. This discussion will be elevated with a deeper description of the facts detailing the crisis occurring in E. Africa. Our goal is to inform and empower participants to take action. We will provide participants with a short list of actions they can take, including opportunities to volunteer within their community and relevant policy actions.

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