Celebrating Earth Day 2017: Environmental and Climate Literacy!

834 659 The Hunger Project Australia

The Hunger Project celebrates Earth Day on April 22, 2017. Earth Day is a call to action for the global community to address climate change, foster a sustainable, healthy environment and protect our planet for future generations. This year, the Earth Day theme is “Environmental and Climate Literacy.

Education is the key to progress. The effects of climate change are disproportionately felt by our poorest and most vulnerable populations. When they are empowered with knowledge, people can take action to defend their environment and promote sustainable solutions to climate change that benefit their communities for both the present and the future.

Protecting and restoring our natural environment is fundamental to ending hunger and poverty. In fact, research has shown that when people live in healthier environments, they lead healthier lives.

The Hunger Project supports communities in becoming more resilient to the pressures of environmental degradation, including soil erosion, water pollution and unreliable or catastrophic weather patterns that affect agriculture and food distribution. We work to raise awareness and empower rural communities through knowledge and training to adapt to climate change. We promote sustainable farming practices, engage communities with data to encourage land reforestation, ensure access to clean water and sanitation and more.

What We Do:

  • Raise awareness of and build the capacity to adapt to climate change. The Hunger Project holds workshops to build our partners’ capacity to exercise leadership, take steps to increase their resilience and formulate strategies to mitigate climate change risks. At the regional and international levels, we also advocate for the conservation of natural resources, the mitigation of the harmful effects of extractive industries, and the recovery and promotion of traditional knowledge and technology that is highly adaptable to changing climate conditions. 
  • Increase the use of renewable energy. Coki Epicentre’s Rural Bank in Senegal partnered with the National Agency of Eco-Villages (ANEV) and the Japanese International Cooperation on a program that promotes the use of biodigesters that convert waste into renewable energy. Biodigesters helps reduce methane emissions and prevent it from being released into the atmosphere. 
  • Promote sustainable farming practices. At our epicentres in Africa, Hunger Project partners create community farms, where villagers learn composting, intercropping and other methods, like drip irrigation, to improve crop yields, restore soil fertility and make the best use of scarce resources.
  • Increase access to sustainable agriculture technology. The Hunger Project provides training and credit, mobilizing people to adopt sustainable agricultural technology and practices, and encourages communities to demand agricultural extension services from their government.
  • Facilitate reforestation and tree planting campaigns. Throughout our program countries, trained Hunger Project partners establish tree nurseries, which reforest their communities, control soil erosion, and create entrepreneurial village businesses, supplying families with fruit trees that not only capture carbon, but also provide nutrition and income. Across our epicentres in Africa, including Benin, Ethiopia, Malawi and Uganda, The Hunger Project advocates for the use of the “miracle” Moringa tree, a drought-tolerant tree with leaves that are rich in vitamin and nutrients. With our community partners, we have distributed thousands of seedlings, and trained communities to cultivate the trees for both additional nutrition and supplemental income.
  • Ensure access to clean water. Water project boards, made up of community leaders, are trained by experts to monitor, maintain and repair water systems. Community partners are trained to use and repair water pumps and generators, and a core group of local leaders lead workshops on WASH (water, sanitation and hygiene) throughout the community to expand grassroots knowledge and promote water safety practices. In Uganda, we’ve partnered with Siemens Stiftung and Sky Juice to launch the Safe Water Enterprise, a community-driven program that provides clean, filtered water for purchase at an affordable price to the community.

This Earth Day, The Hunger Project stands with billions of others around the world to celebrate our planet! Join us in advocating for a healthy, sustainable environment for the future.