February 11, 2022

STONEY CREEK, ONTARIO – GFA World was founded in the US by Dr. K.P. Yohannan in 1979 as a worldwide mission movement dedicated to raising awareness and support for national missionaries serving the needy in Asia and now in Africa. In a recent interview, Dr. K.P. Yohannan said “Our calling as a ministry has always been and will always be to share Christ’s love with people who have never heard. That will never change.” The Gospel for Asia (GFA) community is made up of people from different denominations, backgrounds, and from all walks of life, with one mind and heart: to minister to those in great need with Christ’s love.

GFA World Canada is thankful for all that the Lord has done in the past 37 years and look forward to all that God will do in the years to come
GFA World Canada, located in Stoney Creek, Ontario, celebrates their 37th anniversary of working to see communities transformed by God’s love.

GFA World Comes to Canada

The mission of Gospel for Asia (GFA) first began in Canada in the fall of 1982, when GFA was invited by Last Days Ministries to represent the national missionary movement at the Keith Green Memorial Concert tour. The concerts were a call to mission, in honour of the passion of musician Keith Green, who had died earlier that year in a plane crash. The concert tour included 17 Canadian cities, where GFA staff members set up booths and shared special editions of the SEND! magazine (now called GFA World Magazine), sharing about the work. Many new sponsors for national missionaries were raised up at that time, and the Canadian office of Gospel for Asia (GFA) officially opened on November 19, 1984. The office is currently located at 245 King St East in Stoney Creek, ON.

The Mission Grows

Since it first began, the work of Gospel for Asia (GFA World) has grown to include radio and film ministry, child sponsorship, providing practical and income generating gifts to impoverished families, digging wells and providing clean water, disaster relief, special ministry to women and those afflicted with leprosy, and the mission has recently expanded into the continent of Africa! Gospel for Asia (GFA World) also provides discipleship opportunities for young people in the West, and in June of 2022 Gospel for Asia (GFA) in the US is hosting their first ever Set Apart youth conference. Some of the GFA staff are former students whose lives were forever changed when they came to GFA’s Discipleship Program.

The staff at GFA World celebrated the 37th anniversary with special Danish Butter Cookies, a longstanding tradition, and a staff photo was taken. The staff are incredibly grateful for all that the Lord has done in the last 37 years and thank God for the many faithful donor and sponsors who have risen and joined with us to bring practical help and Hope to thousands of needy people. We are very thankful to our volunteers who have stood with us through thick and thin, sharing about the ministry in their churches and at conferences, and even helping in the office.

Gospel for Asia (GFA World) is thankful for all that the Lord has done in the past 37 years and look forward to all that God will do in the years to come.


About Gospel for Asia – GFA World

GFA World (www.gfa.ca) is a leading faith-based global mission agency, helping national missionaries bring vital assistance and spiritual hope to millions across the world, especially in Asia and Africa, and sharing the love of God. In GFA World’s latest yearly report, this included thousands of community development projects that benefit downtrodden families and their children, free medical camps conducted in more than 1,200 villages and remote communities, over 4,800 clean water wells drilled, over 12,000 water filters installed, income-generating Christmas gifts for more than 260,000 needy families, and teaching providing hope and encouragement available in 110 languages in 14 nations through radio ministry. GFA World has launched programs in Africa, starting with compassion projects in Rwanda. For all the latest news, visit our Press Room at https://gfanews.org/news/.

Media interested in interviews with Gospel For Asia should contact Gregg Wooding at InChrist Communications @ 972-567-7660 or gwooding@inchristcommuications.com


Learn how to get involved with God’s work in Asia. Some plant, others water, but God gives the increase. Discover some of the many ways you can touch the lives of precious men, women and children in Asia using your God-given talents. Get involved right where you are!

Read more blogs on Humanitarian Services and World Missions on Patheos from GFA World.

Read what 25 Christian Leaders are affirming about GFA World.


Source: GFA World Digital Media News Room, GFA World Canada Celebrates Their 37th Anniversary

January 16, 2023

STONEY CREEK, ONTARIO — Every year GFA World and their mission partner, St Cyprian BEC, work together to bring beauty and light to their neighbourhood. One of the ways we do this is by turning three large evergreens into Christmas trees! On November 27 we held a Christmas Tree Lighting. At this event, the Christmas trees were official turned on. They will continue to shine their glorious light all night long until January 6, 2023.

Light and Warmth for All

Every year GFA World and their mission partner, St Cyprian BEC, work together to bring beauty and light to their neighbourhood.
St. Cyprian BEC begins the Advent season by hosting a community event to help bring light to our neighbourhood this Christmas.

Despite the rainy weather, everyone really enjoyed the event. Warm fellowship, friendly smiles, and hot drinks helped to bring joy to the evening. By working together with GFA World, we seek to bring warmth and light to communities in many different nations. Recently, a local pastor and his wife were able to help bring warmth to those rag picking in their community. Through giving the simple gift of blankets to slum dwellers, they are also spreading the Light of Christmas.

Dark nights, different coloured lights, bright stars, and a simple manger scene all come together to bring beauty, joy, and light to the Stoney Creek community. At the Christmas tree lighting Homemade treats were served, hot apple cider and hot chocolate. We sang classic Christmas carols such as “Joy to the World”, “O Christmas Tree”, and “We Wish You a Merry Christmas”. The event was free for all, and we were happy to welcome nearly 50 guests from our community!

Public Servant Flips the Switch

Along with other community members, we were pleased to welcome Todd White and his family. Todd White is the School Board Trustee for Wards 5 and 10, Stoney Creek, and he spoke at the event. Also, he had the honour of pushing the button to officially turn on the Christmas trees. It was very exciting to see the dark night light up when they were turned on!

You can be a part of our mission to transform communities through God’s love too! By providing gifts for those in need, you can equip churches around the world to host events to bless their communities. Together, we can bring light to our communities, celebrating Christ and transforming!


About Gospel for Asia – GFA World

Gospel for Asia (GFA World) is a leading faith-based global mission agency, helping national missionaries bring vital assistance and spiritual hope to millions across the world, especially in Asia and Africa, and sharing the love of God. In GFA World’s latest yearly report, this included thousands of community development projects that benefit downtrodden families and their children, free medical camps conducted in more than 1,200 villages and remote communities, over 4,800 clean water wells drilled, over 12,000 water filters installed, income-generating Christmas gifts for more than 260,000 needy families, and teaching providing hope and encouragement available in 110 languages in 14 nations through radio ministry. GFA World has launched programs in Africa, starting with compassion projects in Rwanda. For all the latest news, visit our Press Room at https://gfanews.org/news/.

Media interested in interviews with Gospel for Asia should contact Gregg Wooding at InChrist Communications @ 972-567-7660 or gwooding@inchristcommuications.com


Source: GFA World Digital Media Room, Lighting Up Stoney Creek

Learn more about the GFA World national missionary workers who carry a burning desire for people to know the love of God. Through their prayers, dedication and sacrificial love, thousands of men and women have found new life in Christ.

Read more on Christmas Gift Catalog and GFA World Canada on Patheos from Gospel for Asia.

January 9, 2023

STONEY CREEK, ONTARIO — November 14-20 marked this year’s National Collection Week for Operation Christmas Child (OCC) shoeboxes. St. Cyprian Believers Eastern Church (BEC) was proud to once more serve as an OCC collection centre for Stoney Creek. Also, GFA World Canada celebrated their 38th anniversary on November 19th.

Every year during National Collection Week, churches across Canada partner with Samaritan’s Purse. During this week, gift filled shoeboxes that have been packed as a part of Samaritan’s Purse’s Operation Christmas Child, are gathered at churches serving as collection centres. At the end of the week, the boxes are taken to regional collection centres to be shipped to Calgary, AB. There, they are processed before being sent to needy children around the world.

As St. Cyprian BEC shares a building with the GFA World office, we were proud to work together to serve as an OCC collection centre. This is the fifth year that we have worked with Samaritan’s Purse in this capacity, and we were excited to receive our largest number of boxes yet! Through the generosity of our community, we were able to send over 1050 shoeboxes to be processed and sent to children in need! This is a 30% increase from last year, and a 17% increase from our previous record!

Several local churches brought the boxes they had collected, and many individuals came by as well. The OCC drop-off coordinator expressed his joy in being able to volunteer with Samaritan’s Purse. “It’s wonderful to greet donors while helping with Operation Christmas Child” He said. “People are so often enthusiastic and happy to help these children.” For some, participation in OCC would have been impossible without our drop-off location.

GFA World Canada celebrates 38 years of serving God and humanity alongside local churches serving as a collection centre for OCC shoeboxes
GFA World Canada celebrates 38 years of serving God and humanity while their field partner St. Cyprian serves as a collection centre for OCC shoeboxes (https://www.bechurch.ca/).

Bringing extra joy to collection week, GFA World Canada celebrated their 38th year of service on November 19! We praise God for the many different opportunities He has given us to serve. Working with local believers in 18 different countries, we have helped provide 39 million people with safe, clean drinking water. Also, 142,000 children have been helped through our child sponsorship program. And, in 2021 alone, no less than 163,300 families were helped through income-generating or quality-of-life gifts. A staff photo was taken to commemorate the anniversary.

For the last 38 years we have been working with passionate, faithful, and generous people across Canada. With their help, we have assisted local churches in needy areas with the resources they need to share God’s love. Thank you for being a part of it all!


About Gospel for Asia – GFA World

Gospel for Asia (GFA World) is a leading faith-based global mission agency, helping national missionaries bring vital assistance and spiritual hope to millions across the world, especially in Asia and Africa, and sharing the love of God. In GFA World’s latest yearly report, this included thousands of community development projects that benefit downtrodden families and their children, free medical camps conducted in more than 1,200 villages and remote communities, over 4,800 clean water wells drilled, over 12,000 water filters installed, income-generating Christmas gifts for more than 260,000 needy families, and teaching providing hope and encouragement available in 110 languages in 14 nations through radio ministry. GFA World has launched programs in Africa, starting with compassion projects in Rwanda. For all the latest news, visit our Press Room at https://gfanews.org/news/.

Media interested in interviews with Gospel for Asia should contact Gregg Wooding at InChrist Communications @ 972-567-7660 or gwooding@inchristcommuications.com


Source: GFA World Digital Media News Room, GFA World Celebrates 38 Years of Serving Alongside Local Churches

Learn more about the GFA World national missionary workers who carry a burning desire for people to know the love of God. Through their prayers, dedication and sacrificial love, thousands of men and women have found new life in Christ.

Read more on Christmas Gift Catalog and GFA World Canada on Patheos from Gospel for Asia.

December 15, 2022

WILLS POINT, TX — For the world’s poorest children, one thing increases their chances of graduating from university by up to 80% — being sponsored by someone in the U.S. or other Western country.

Child sponsorship makes university dream alive for world's poor, escaping the generational poverty trap, says Gospel for Asia (GFA world)
CHILD SPONSORSHIP ‘TURNS DESPAIR TO REMARKABLE HOPE’: A new report (http://www.gfa.org/press/sponsor) by global mission agency Gospel for Asia (GFA World) says research suggests the sponsor-a-child model adopted by many leading nonprofit organizations gives children in abject poverty a much higher chance of graduating from university and achieving their dreams.

A new report (http://www.gfa.org/press/sponsor) says research conducted in six developing countries around the world over a two-year period suggests the sponsor-a-child model adopted by many leading nonprofit organizations makes “significant impacts” on sponsored children’s education, health, well-being, and aspirations.

Researchers from the University of San Francisco (USF) and University of Minnesota found sponsored children in South Asia, Africa and Latin America stayed in school longer, were much more likely to complete high school, and were 50-80% more likely to graduate from university, says global mission agency GFA World (Gospel for Asia).

Escaping Generational Trap

“When children in abject poverty have no prospect of going to school, their dreams are crushed and they have no hope of escaping the generational poverty trap,” said Gospel for Asia (GFA World) founder K.P. Yohannan, also known as Metropolitan Yohan.

Child sponsorship “provides the opportunity to go to school, receive basic healthcare, and have clean water–meeting whatever needs the child’s community might have,” he said. “It turns utter despair to remarkable hope. Many sponsored children grow up to be teachers, nurses, and even doctors.”

Sponsored children — most of them supported by donors in the U.S., Canada and other Western countries — show “higher levels of self-esteem, aspirations and self-expectations, and lower levels of hopelessness,” says the report titled Child Sponsorship Helps Lift the Young Out of Cycle of Poverty (http://www.gfa.org/press/sponsor).

Created For So Much More

For thousands of children — like Bir, a boy who used to scavenge in trash piles to survive, and Divena, a five-year-old girl abandoned by her mother — when a sponsor steps up it speaks to their hearts, showing them “they’re created for a higher purpose and that God really loves them,” Yohannan said.

Gospel for Asia (GFA World) donors have helped support 142,000 children across South Asia, and the organization aims to sponsor 500,000 children worldwide by 2030.

“Millions of children living on the streets and in slums today is truly heart-breaking,” said Yohannan. “We must rescue them and give them hope in Christ’s name.”


About GFA World

GFA World (Gospel for Asia) is a leading faith-based global mission agency, helping national workers bring vital assistance and spiritual hope to millions across the world, especially in Asia and Africa, and sharing the love of God. In a typical year, this includes thousands of community development projects that benefit downtrodden families and their children, free medical camps conducted in more than 880 villages and remote communities, over 4,800 clean water wells drilled, over 12,000 water filters installed, income-generating Christmas gifts for more than 163,000 needy families, and teaching to provide hope and encouragement in 110 languages in 14 nations through broadcast ministry. GFA World has launched programs in Africa, starting with compassion projects in Rwanda. For all the latest news, visit the Press Room at https://gfanews.org/news.


Read more blogs on Poverty Alleviation, Children’s Education, and Child Sponsorship on Patheos from Gospel for Asia.

Learn more about how to provide pure, clean water to families and villages through GFA World Jesus Wells and BioSand Water Filters.

Learn more about Gospel for Asia: Facebook | YouTube | Instagram | LinkedIn | SourceWatch | Integrity | Lawsuit Update | 5 Distinctives | 6 Remarkable Facts | 10 Milestones | Media Room | Malaria Vaccine | Endorsements | 40th Anniversary | Lawsuit Response | International Offices | Missionary and Child Sponsorship | Transforming Communities through God’s Love

Notable News about Gospel for Asia: FoxNews, ChristianPost, NYPost, MissionsBox


Source: GFA World Digital Media Room, Child Sponsorship Makes University Dream Come Alive for World’s Poor, Says Gospel for Asia [GFA World]

November 25, 2022

STONEY CREEK, ONTARIO — October 22, 2022 St. Cyprian BEC (https://www.bechurch.ca), mission partner of Gospel for Asia (GFA World, founded by Dr. K.P. Yohannan, has been the model for numerous charities like Gospel for Asia Canada), hosted a free Fall Festival for the community. We gratefully took advantage of one of the last warm weekends of the year for this event. Families and individuals were welcomed to the property we share with Gospel for Asia (GFA World) from one to five in the afternoon. Donations were accepted to support the local Stoney Creek Food Bank.

St. Cyprian Believers Eastern Church, a GFA partner, welcomed the local community for an afternoon of fun to help strengthen relationships
St. Cyprian BEC took advantage of one of the last nice weekends in October to welcome the Stoney Creek community for a free Fall Festival (https://www.bechurch.ca/).

This event featured fall treats made by parishoners, games, face painting, a bouncy castle, and the opportunity to interact with other community members. Dave Coruzzi, a local musician and guitar teacher, also provided live music during the event. Almost 150 people attended the festival.

Stoney Creek is a multi-cultural community, and we were delighted to have families from different backgrounds in attendance. We love being able to share small pieces of our cultural heritage with those from other backgrounds! Sometimes we do so through teaching adults how to play checkers, or playing giant-sized jenga. Or just sharing some of our favourite fall-time snacks and treats like caramel popcorn and chocolate chip cookies.

Around the world, Believer’s Eastern Church parishes seek to meet the needs in their communities. Partnering with Gospel for Asia (GFA World), we have helped organize free medical camps in remote areas. Also, we have been able to provide mosquito nets to many impoverished people in various communities.


About Gospel for Asia – GFA World

Gospel for Asia (GFA World) is a leading faith-based global mission agency, helping national missionaries bring vital assistance and spiritual hope to millions across the world, especially in Asia and Africa, and sharing the love of God. In GFA World’s latest yearly report, this included thousands of community development projects that benefit downtrodden families and their children, free medical camps conducted in more than 1,200 villages and remote communities, over 4,800 clean water wells drilled, over 12,000 water filters installed, income-generating Christmas gifts for more than 260,000 needy families, and teaching providing hope and encouragement available in 110 languages in 14 nations through radio ministry. GFA World has launched programs in Africa, starting with compassion projects in Rwanda. For all the latest news, visit our Press Room at https://gfanews.org/news/.

Media interested in interviews with Gospel for Asia should contact Gregg Wooding at InChrist Communications @ 972-567-7660 or gwooding@inchristcommuications.com


Source: GFA World Digital Media News Room, Enjoying the Fall Season at the Stoney Creek Pumpkin Fest

Learn more about the GFA World national missionary workers who carry a burning desire for people to know the love of God. Through their prayers, dedication and sacrificial love, thousands of men and women have found new life in Christ.

Read more on Humanitarian Services and GFA World Canada on Patheos from Gospel for Asia.

November 15, 2022

WILLS POINT, TX – Gospel for Asia (GFA World) founded by K.P. Yohannan, whose heart to love and help the poor has inspired numerous charities like Gospel for Asia Canada, to serve the deprived and downcast worldwide, discussing a village in destitution, and the Gospel for Asia (GFA) pastors that provide toilets bringing health and sanitation.

As the two men walked through the village, they noted destitution, poverty and another problem common to many communities: poor sanitation. Each home bore these same signs, which made it clear there were no suitable sanitation facilities, no toilets. Something needed to be done; the villagers couldn’t live like this. The two Gospel for Asia (GFA) missionaries then resolved on a plan to help these families.

Unavoidable Dangers

GFA World discussing a village in destitution, and the GFA pastors that provide toilets bringing health and sanitation.
Impoverished families who are gifted with outdoor toilets no longer have to worry about the dangers of a lack of adequate sanitation facilities.

Gospel for Asia (GFA) pastor Nikolos, his wife and their two sons lived and served in a rural village where the main source of income was daily labor, followed by farming. Most families barely made enough to keep themselves afloat. As it was, every single penny earned went for food and providing for any emergency needs. Anything else was completely out of the question—including toilets.

When Pastor Nikolos walked through his village, what he saw dismayed him. Without a designated and safe area to relieve themselves, the villagers used any private place they could find, which was normally the area around their homes. The unsanitary conditions were unfit for anyone to live in. But the environment was perfect for something: infection. Poor sanitation is a leading cause of diarrheal diseases, according to the World Health Organization—and diarrheal diseases are among the foremost causes of death in children. So not only did the villagers live in constant fear of disease, but when they relieved themselves at night, they also risked poisonous insects and venomous snakes.

The villagers couldn’t live like this, and Pastor Nikolos knew it.

Fighting off Disease, Despair

In response, the pastor put in a call to his leadership, who sent Gospel for Asia (GFA) pastor Jiles to help. Pastor Jiles leads the sanitation ministries in the area, and his job was to determine exactly how and in what capacity he and Pastor Nikolos could help the villagers. After the pastors’ walk-through, five families were identified as those who could benefit most from a toilet. With the recipients chosen, the pastors informed the families of what the workers were planning, much to the villagers’ joy. Then, construction began.

Once the toilets were completed, the families could not express their gratitude enough. Now, they would be able relieve themselves without fear of illness or infection. No more constantly living in anxiety; no more putting themselves at risk of venomous attacks in the dark. Now their homes and the immediate areas are cleaner, far less likely to spread disease.

The families thanked Pastor Nikolos, who in turn thanked his leadership and the sponsors who make such gifts to impoverished families possible. It is together that they can bring these families the relief they needed from poor hygiene, the protection they needed from animal attacks, and the dignity they deserve.


Read how toilets helped protect families and instilled hope in a village.

*Names of people and places may have been changed for privacy and security reasons. Images are Gospel for Asia World stock photos used for representation purposes and are not the actual person/location, unless otherwise noted.


Source: Gospel for Asia Field Reports & Updates, GFA Pastors Provide Toilets for Village

Learn how to help protect people’s health, prevent diseases and help cure illnesses through donating towards Medical Camps, Mosquito Nets and constructing Outdoor Toilets.

Learn more by reading this GFA World Special Report: Fight Against Open Defecation Continues – Using Outdoor Toilets to Improve Sanitation

Read more on Toilets and Christmas Gift Catalog on Patheos from Gospel for Asia.

September 26, 2022

WILLS POINT, TX – Gospel for Asia (GFA World) founded by K.P. Yohannan, has been the model for numerous charities like Gospel for Asia Canada, to help the poor and deprived worldwide, discussing how Gospel for Asia (GFA World) child sponsorship program helped a young woman fulfill her dream.

Sarafina swept the floor of her grandparents’ house, discouraged, ashamed and with no hope for her future. She wanted a job so desperately, but after discontinuing her studies a few years prior, she figured her chances of ever getting a decent one was slim to none.

She had moved in with her maternal grandparents after her mother died and her father remarried. Her grandparents had worried her stepmother wouldn’t love or look after Sarafina well, so they welcomed their granddaughter into their home with open arms. But their finances were pretty tight, which meant Sarafina would not be able to pursue higher education that would enable her to get a good job.

Shattered Dreams

Gospel for Asia (GFA World) founded by K.P. Yohannan, discussing how child sponsorship program helped a young woman fulfill her dream.
Through GFA World’s child sponsorship program, Sarafina was able to achieve her goals.

In her younger years, Sarafina had participated in GFA’s child sponsorship program. Seeing the need of her and her family, Gospel for Asia (GFA) staff had welcomed 5-year-old Sarafina into the program, providing pencils, books, a schoolbag and all the other supplies she needed to succeed in her studies. Providing education support such as tutoring, Gospel for Asia (GFA) workers invested in Sarafina’s education and success.

After completing the 12th grade, Sarafina graduated from the program with plans to pursue higher education. Instead, due to her family situation and their financial constraints, she took care of the house and helped her aging grandparents. Sarafina feared being a burden on her grandparents, yet she also longed for the opportunity to continue her studies—a dream that Sarafina felt might never be fulfilled.

A Second Chance

A few years later, local Gospel for Asia (GFA) staff conducted a youth fellowship program and invited all the graduates of the child sponsorship program to attend. Sarafina happily accepted the invitation, excited to attend the event.

Sarafina’s former teachers were thrilled to see her and inquired how she was doing. They were shocked to learn that she, who had kept such a promise, had discontinued her education. Sarafina explained what had happened and how she had to prioritize caring for her grandparents over pursuing her dreams.

The Gospel for Asia (GFA) workers listened attentively and offered encouragement. They even informed Sarafina of a place she could go to pursue further education that would help her secure a job.

Sarafina was overjoyed! She excitedly enrolled in a course to prepare for work as a blood bank technician. Though the program was not easy for her, Sarafina put her trust in Jesus and remained in contact with the Gospel for Asia (GFA) workers from the program, who provided encouragement and support every step of the way.

Renewed Hope, Strengthened Faith

Eventually, Sarafina finished her degree and obtained a job in a hospital as a pathology lab technician. Sarafina was overwhelmed with joy and gratitude at the second chance she had been given to reach her dreams.

“My heart is filled with gratitude toward God and His people,” Sarafina said. “I will never forget [the GFA workers] and all the help I have received from them. It is only because of [them] that I am in this job today.”

Through the encouragement and support of the Gospel for Asia (GFA) workers, Sarafina not only was able to pursue her heart’s desire of finishing her education and getting a job, but she also experienced Christ’s love.


Read how GFA’s child sponsorship program changed Acenath’s life.

*Names of people and places may have been changed for privacy and security reasons. Images are Gospel for Asia World stock photos used for representation purposes and are not the actual person/location, unless otherwise noted.


Source: Gospel for Asia Field Reports & Updates, GFA Child Sponsorship Program Helps Young Woman Fulfill Dream

Learn more about the GFA World national missionary workers who carry a burning desire for people to know the love of God. Through their prayers, dedication and sacrificial love, thousands of men and women have found new life in Christ.

Read more on GFA World Missionaries and Child Sponsorship Program on Patheos from Gospel for Asia.

June 6, 2022

WILLS POINT, TX – Gospel for Asia (GFA World and affiliates like Gospel for Asia Canada) founded by KP Yohannan, issued a Special Report on the ugly truths of world hunger: “Scandal of Starvation” — world hunger is a long-term social and global crisis, directly or indirectly causing around 9 million deaths each year – more than AIDS, malaria, and tuberculosis combined.

A student washing her hands outside latrines.
A student washes her hands outside newly built latrines at the primary school in Kuzungula District, Southern Province, Zambia. Inadequate and inequitable access to safe water and sanitation services, coupled with poor hygiene practices, continue to threaten the health and growth of children in African nations like Ethiopia, Zambia, Zimbabwe and others. © UNICEF/UN0145990/Schermbrucker

Hunger Close to Home

If hunger is obvious across great swaths of Africa and Asia, it is not so evident in other parts of the world. But that does not mean it is not an issue. Hans Konrad Biesalski, a German physician and professor of chemistry and nutrition, has detailed the challenge of “hidden hunger” in a similarly titled book.

Hans Konrad Biesalski
Prof. Dr. Biesalski launched the Hidden Hunger Congress, which draws attention to hidden malnutrition.Photo by University of Hohenheim / Jana Kay

He refers to micronutrient malnutrition, which affects a third of the world’s population. Even if someone’s stomach isn’t entirely empty, it may not be filled with the vitamins and minerals their body needs. Citing a four-fold increase in cases of rickets in England over a 15-year period, he warns that micronutrient inadequacies “are to be found in the developed world as well as in the developing world, and their current European rate of growth in the developed world gives cause for concern.”

According to the U.N., more than 2 billion people, the majority in low- and middle-income countries, do not have access to enough safe and nutritious food. It is not exclusively a problem of poorer nations: One in 12 of the population of North America does not get to eat enough regularly.

Many people go hungry in the United States, though typically more episodically than continually, as in other parts of the world. Just over one in ten American households—almost 40 million people, 11 million of them children—were “food insecure” at some stage during 2018. The good news is that figure is down from the Great Recession rates of a decade ago.

Rates of need varied widely from less than eight percent in New Hampshire to almost 17 percent in New Mexico. Overall, food insecurity was higher in cities than in rural communities, with the suburbs faring best.

From its research, Feeding America finds children in the U.S. more likely to face hunger than the rest of the population, ranging from one in ten in North Dakota to one in four in New Mexico. The organization notes that the health, social, and behavioral problems hungry children are at risk from are exacerbated during school holidays, when feeding programs are suspended.

Gospel for Asia-supported workers feeding children
You can make an impact in the lives of needy kids! One of the greatest feelings in the world is knowing that we as individuals can make a difference in the life of a child who’s food insecure. A healthy, nutritious meal once each day is just one of the many benefits children receive while enrolled in GFA’s Bridge of Hope Program, which supports tens of thousands of kids throughout Asia.

Good News in Word and Deed

While GFA’s field partners join in the awareness-raising focus of World Hunger Day and World Food Day, they are more quietly involved in tackling hunger year-round. Food is an integral part of the 500-plus Bridge of Hope centers run in slums and villages across South Asia. The free education program, which is currently being offered to around 70,000 enrolled children, is a fundamental part of helping improve their futures, and lunch is as important as the lessons.

For students like brother and sister Panav and Kajiri, the nutritious curry and rice they served at Bridge of Hope is an important supplement to the basic food they get at home: bread and milk for breakfast, with fried vegetables, eggs, and chapatis for supper.

Some question faith-based organizations’ involvement in humanitarian efforts like feeding the hungry, despite Jesus’ clear example of caring for the poor in practical ways, because they suspect mixed motives among givers or receivers, or both. They talk of so-called “rice Christians,” who pay lip service to belief for the benefits they get.

For K.P. Yohannan, it’s a false dichotomy. “The huge battles we face against hunger, poverty and suffering in Asia and around the world are in part spiritual, not simply physical or social as secularists would have us believe,” he says. “We cannot separate the visible and the invisible in this battle.”

Many people go hungry in the United States, though typically more episodically than continually, as in other parts of the world. Just over one in ten American households—almost 40 million people, 11 million of them children—were “food insecure” at some stage during 2018.

Sometimes providing food for today is all that can be done, but GFA’s field partners look for ways to provide food for tomorrow and the day after. Their work follows the old adage about giving someone a fish, to feed them once, or teaching them to fish, so they can continue to feed themselves.

GFA’s field partners provide fishing nets and other income-generating supplies such as sewing machines, livestock and rickshaws through Christmas gift distribution programs. Palan stands among thousands of people who have received such gifts. Since Palan had no land of his own to work, his income depended on the fish he could catch, but he had only one poor quality net. The one he received through the Gospel for Asia (GFA) supported gift distribution means he can now meet his needs. In 2018, Gospel for Asia (GFA) workers presented income-generating and life-improving Christmas gifts to almost a quarter of a million people like Palan.

Man casting a fishing net
Since Palan had no land of his own to work, his family depended on the fish he could catch for food and income, but he had only one poor quality net. The new one he received as a gift from Gospel for Asia (GFA) partners means he can now meet his family’s everyday needs for good food and healthy nutrition.

It is easy to get overwhelmed by the scale of a problem, believing that one person’s efforts will not make much of a difference. But Jesus’s example of addressing hunger offers one of the greatest examples of how giving just a little can make a big impact.

After a long day listening to Him teach, the crowd of thousands was hungry. When Jesus told His disciples to feed them, they couldn’t see how. They only had the lunch a small boy offered: five barley loaves and two fish. Yet God multiplied that to meet everyone’s needs.

In the same way, we should not focus on what we think can’t be achieved. We should instead give and do what we can with the faith and expectation that God will take and use it in a way that exceeds what seems possible. What are practical ways to do that?

Be more intentional about reducing the amount of food that gets wasted in your home, to help make a dent in the squandering supply chain.

Support local organizations that redistribute surplus produce to those in need. You don’t even need to leave home to do that: the annual National Association of Letter Carriers’ Stamp Out Hunger National Food Drive sees mailmen and -women collecting donations of non-perishable foods on their rounds on the second Saturday in May.

Each time you dine out, buy someone else a meal by donating to Gospel for Asia (GFA) or some other organization feeding the hungry.

These small steps may not seem like much, but they certainly count in God’s sight. When Jesus told His followers they will be rewarded for having fed Him when He was hungry, He said that some would be perplexed.

“Lord, when did we see You hungry and feed You?” they will ask. The King will respond, “Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me” (Matthew 25: 37, 40).


Give Food, Aid to Victims of Hunger & Starvation

Learn about how to bring practical help in Jesus’ name to the suffering and needy, relieving the burdened, rescuing the endangered and revealing God’s compassion to the people of Asia through Gospel for Asia Compassion Services.


Read the rest of Gospel for Asia’s Special Report on The Scandal of Starvation in a World of Plenty: World Hunger’s Ugly Truths Revealed — Part 1, Part 2

This Special Report originally appeared on gfa.org.

Read another Special Report from Gospel for Asia on Poverty: Public Enemy #1 – Eliminating Extreme Poverty Worldwide is Possible, But Not Inevitable.

Learn more by reading this special report from Gospel for Asia: Solutions to Poverty-Line Problems of the Poor & Impoverished — Education’s Impact on Extreme Poverty Eradication.


Click here, to read more blogs on Patheos from Gospel for Asia.

Learn more about Gospel for Asia: Facebook | YouTube | Instagram | LinkedIn | SourceWatch | Integrity | Lawsuit Update | 5 Distinctives | 6 Remarkable Facts | 10 Milestones | Media Room | Scandal of Starvation | Endorsements | 40th Anniversary | Lawsuit Response |

Notable News about Gospel for Asia: FoxNews, ChristianPost, NYPost, MissionsBox

June 3, 2022

WILLS POINT, TX – Gospel for Asia (GFA World and affiliates like Gospel for Asia Canada) founded by KP Yohannan, issued a Special Report on the ugly truths of world hunger: “Scandal of Starvation” — world hunger is a long-term social and global crisis, directly or indirectly causing around 9 million deaths each year – more than AIDS, malaria, and tuberculosis combined.

Food loss / waste infographic
Hunger remains one of the most urgent and challenging problems of our globe, yet the world is producing more than enough food. Recovering just half of what is lost or wasted could feed the world alone. The FAO-led Save Food initiative is working to reduce food loss and waste in both the developing and the industrialized world. Photo by Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations

The War on Waste

Thankfully, efforts are being made to cut the terrible waste. The World Union of Wholesale Markets, a nonprofit group representing more than 150 wholesale markets around the world, has committed to new collaboration with the U.N.-FAO to improve distribution. Only a fraction of the food business world may be involved in the initiative, but it’s a start.

Korger woman employee attending produce section
Will Kroger’s latest announcement regarding its Pickuliar Picks brand spur more retailers to step up and make an effort to minimize food waste? Photo by Kroger

Meanwhile, big businesses are recognizing the need to be better stewards. At a special gathering on reducing loss hosted by the International Food Policy Institute, Kroger executive Denise Osterhues spoke of her company’s steps in that area. The senior director for corporate affairs told how Kroger had begun marking down red-bagged produce when it neared expiration date, introduced a “Pickuliar Picks” line of imperfect produce, and developed clearer date labeling to help consumers make the most of their food purchases.

Like a growing number of other food retailers and servers, Kroger also donates surplus and past-date supplies to charitable organizations for redistribution. It gave away 90 million pounds of produce in 2018.

“It is a cruel, unjust and paradoxical reality that, today, there is food for everyone, and yet not everyone has access to it, and that in some areas of the world food is wasted, discarded and consumed in excess …”
Pope Francis, World Food Day 2019

Many different charitable organizations are eager to make use of produce that doesn’t get sold for one reason or another. In 2018, the 800 members of the Global FoodBanking Network alone distributed around half a million tons of food and grocery products.

At a plant in Sultana, in the heart of California’s breadbasket San Joaquin Valley, Gleanings for the Hungry recycles bruised and misshapen fruits and vegetables from growers in the area for shipping around the world. This ministry of Youth With a Mission (YWAM) takes its name from the directive in Leviticus 19 that the Israelites should not reap to the edges of their field, but leave the “gleanings” for the poor to gather up. For the last 40 years, Gleanings for the Hungry has processed and distributed millions of pounds of produce through partner organizations.

UglyFood co-founders
UglyFood co-founders divert fresh produce waste away from incineration plants and landfills by transforming it instead into healthy and delectable food products. Photo by UglyFood

In Singapore, Pei Shan co-founded Ugly Food to make use of the produce that shoppers ignore because it doesn’t look nice enough. Her company turns the rejected items into healthy juices, ice cream bars, and fruit teas.

“Ultimately, we want our business to create a conversation about ‘cosmetic filtering’ and to help others rethink what they consider as waste,” she says.

Feeding India’s Magic Wheels program is a fleet of trucks that collects unused food from canteens, wedding receptions, and other events for redistribution. The vehicles are equipped with temperature-controlled insulated boxes to keep the food fresh, and donors are given a liability release form to protect them. Feeding India has also set up Happy Fridges in residential and public spaces in 25 cities. The refrigerators are stocked free by donors, and available for anyone to come and take what they want, free of charge.

Launched in Delhi in 2014, the Robin Hood Army, a zero-funds organization that relies on volunteers to collect and distribute leftover food from restaurants and other businesses, has since served more than 26.5 million meals in more than 150 cities across a dozen countries.

Undernourishment and chronic hunger worldwide
Undernourishment and chronic hunger represent the inability of persons to consume enough food sufficient to meet dietary energy requirements. Photo by Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations

How Hunger Harms the Human Body

Nutrition is about more than just having enough to eat, though. It’s having the right things to eat. Sometimes a body may be seemingly well-fed, but actually starving of the nutrients it really needs.

More than 20 million babies born in 2015 had problematically low birthweight due to a lack of proper nutrition.That is why, though it seems almost contradictory, there has been an alarming rise in obesity, including in low-income countries in parts of sub-Saharan Africa and South and East Asia. A U.N. study in Latin America and the Caribbean found that the percentage of people there with obesity had tripled since 1975, while hunger increased 11 percent in the last four years.

As a complex machine, the human body needs high-grade fuel to run well. Without it, systems start to break down. In parts of the world where food is scarce or of poor quality, the lack of vital vitamins and minerals has a serious impact.

Insufficient iron, a condition often made worse by malaria and other infectious diseases, makes pregnancy more risky and impairs physical and cognitive development. Lack of vitamin A can lower a person’s resistance to disease, impair growth in children and cause blindness. Lack of iodine is one of the major causes of reduced cognitive development in children.

All this lack of proper nutrition poses an especially severe threat to pregnant women and newborn babies: One in seven of 2015’s live deliveries—more than 20 million babies—had a problematically low birthweight.

As with all big social issues, hunger issues are complex.
Hunger is inextricably linked to poverty, which in turn can’t be separated from war, political unrest,
and prejudice. Millions starve because of others’
actions and inactions, without even taking
into account natural disasters.

A good diet is especially crucial in the first three years, when young brains and bodies are developing. Ironically, malnutrition is linked to a higher risk of being overweight and chronic diseases like diabetes in later life.

An article by Lauren Weber graphically illustrated the importance of a good diet’s importance. A photograph featured in the article showed a dramatic difference between two five-year-olds born on the same day in Madagascar: Miranto, a good student, stood more than a head taller than Sitraka, who was unable to attend school because he hadn’t yet learned to speak properly and had trouble being still for any length of time. The difference? Their diet.

Miranto and Sitraka standing beside each other, holding hands.
Miranto and Sitraka were born on the same day in the same village in Madagascar, but Sitraka is chronically malnourished which in turn has stunted his growth and hampered his ability to communicate, sit, or stand for any length of time. © UNICEF/UN025900/MICHEL

Sitraka was a victim of “stunting,” low height for age because of chronic nutrient deficiency. Like him, “most chronically malnourished children are shorter than their healthier peers,” she states.

In 2017, the UN found almost 151 million children under age 5 were too short for their age due to malnutrition. Africa and Asia accounted for 39 percent and 55 percent of all stunted children, respectively. Nearly 38 percent of children under 5 in India were found to be stunted in 2018, accounting for a third of the world’s total. The countries with the next-highest numbers were Nigeria and Pakistan.

Such children’s immune systems are weaker, “leaving them more susceptible to repeated infections. And their brains do not develop fully, leading to lower IQs and a decrease in lifetime productivity” said Weber.

“Wasting,” meanwhile, is evidenced by low body weight for age, with the associated reduced muscle mass leaving children at greater risk of death from what might otherwise be minor infections. In 2017, one in ten children in Asia was underweight for their age, compared to just one in 100 in Latin America and the Caribbean.

Children eating food
A healthy, nutritious meal once each day is just one of the many benefits children receive while enrolled in GFA’s Bridge of Hope Program, which supports tens of thousands of kids throughout Asia.

Hunger’s Hidden Costs

The high cost of hunger might be seen better by evaluating its absence.

“In adulthood, per capita income of individuals who were not stunted at two years is higher compared to individuals who were stunted at two years,” said the U.N. “This increase comes about through the impact of improved nutrition on income through higher schooling and better cognitive skills. In fact, a reduction in global levels of stunting by 20 percent would represent a rise in income of 11 percent.”

Mother with children inside house
Being a widow in South Asia is not easy—in order to provide for their children, many widows are forced to beg on the streets or turn to prostitution.

Hunger doesn’t just endanger people’s physical and intellectual development. It can damage their souls as well as their organs.

After visiting Zimbabwe, a country ravaged by drought and a sluggish economy, Hilal Elver, the UN Special Rapporteur on the Right to Food, noted some other effects of food scarcity.

“The most vulnerable segments of society, including the elderly, children and women, are forced to rely upon coping mechanisms such as, school dropout, early marriage, and sex trade to obtain food, behavioral patterns that often are accompanied by domestic violence,” she said. “This kind of struggle for subsistence affects their physical well-being and self-respect. It creates behavior and conditions that violate their most fundamental human rights.”

In common with other big social issues, it’s women and children who are often worst affected by hunger. Young women need iron-rich food to replenish what’s lost during menstruation, or they will face anemia, which can lead to heightened incidence of maternal deaths and stillbirths. A World Food Programme (WFP) study found 15- to 19-year-old girls in one part of Uganda had anemia rates two to three times higher than the national average.

Malnutrition statistics of children worldwide
Photo by Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations

The WFP report urged making greater efforts to keep adolescent girls in school and provide them with nutritious diets. A separate study by the organization found multiple benefits from school feeding programs in Indonesia. Enrollment, attendance, and understanding went up, while drop-out rates fell. The benefits went beyond the individual students and their futures, however.

Free school meals made limited household money available for other needs, which reduced the pressure on keeping kids away from school to help around the home or earn income. The study concluded that for every dollar invested in the feeding program there would be a five-fold return to the economy over the lifetime of each beneficiary.

As with all big social issues, hunger issues are complex. Hunger is inextricably linked to poverty, which in turn can’t be separated from war, political unrest, and prejudice. Millions starve because of others’ actions and inactions, without even taking into account natural disasters.

Free meals given out to children at the GFA Bridge of Hope center
Free school meals at Bridge of Hope make limited household money available for other needs, which reduces the pressure on keeping kids away from school to help around the home or earn income.

Malnutrition isn’t just a result of not having enough to eat, or even not having enough of the right things to eat. World Hunger notes that in many parts of Asia, “poor and insufficient sanitation and hygiene practices can increase the spread of disease and infection.” Two central sanitation issues contribute to up to half the cases of child malnourishment: the lack of access to clean water, and the presence of open defecation, which is still a problem in many parts of India. The elimination of the practice has been sought through a large-scale push of education and construction of community toilets undertaken by India’s government and non-profit groups such as Gospel for Asia (GFA).

In Ethiopia, a focus on ending open defecation helped to drastically improve nutrition levels and cut child stunting almost in half between 2000 and 2014, though the reduced 40 percent level remains “unacceptably high.”

The downward spiral of inadequate diet and poor sanitation and hygiene has been spotlighted in a United Nations International Children’s Emergency Fund report: “Diarrhea or infectious disease can cause loss of micronutrients or inhibit consumption of sufficient nutritional foods, weakening an individual to become more susceptible to severe illness, and thus exacerbating the micronutrient deficiency.”


Give Food, Aid to Victims of Hunger & Starvation

Learn about how to bring practical help in Jesus’ name to the suffering and needy, relieving the burdened, rescuing the endangered and revealing God’s compassion to the people of Asia through Gospel for Asia Compassion Services.


Read the rest of Gospel for Asia’s Special Report on The Scandal of Starvation in a World of Plenty: World Hunger’s Ugly Truths Revealed — Part 1, Part 3

This Special Report originally appeared on gfa.org.

Read another Special Report from Gospel for Asia on Poverty: Public Enemy #1 – Eliminating Extreme Poverty Worldwide is Possible, But Not Inevitable.

Learn more by reading this special report from Gospel for Asia: Solutions to Poverty-Line Problems of the Poor & Impoverished — Education’s Impact on Extreme Poverty Eradication.


Click here, to read more blogs on Patheos from Gospel for Asia.

Learn more about Gospel for Asia: Facebook | YouTube | Instagram | LinkedIn | SourceWatch | Integrity | Lawsuit Update | 5 Distinctives | 6 Remarkable Facts | 10 Milestones | Media Room | Scandal of Starvation | Endorsements | 40th Anniversary | Lawsuit Response |

Notable News about Gospel for Asia: FoxNews, ChristianPost, NYPost, MissionsBox

June 1, 2022

WILLS POINT, TX – Gospel for Asia (GFA World and affiliates like Gospel for Asia Canada) founded by KP Yohannan, issued a Special Report on the ugly truths of world hunger: “Scandal of Starvation” — world hunger is a long-term social and global crisis, directly or indirectly causing around 9 million deaths each year – more than AIDS, malaria, and tuberculosis combined.

Gospel for Asia (GFA) founded by KP Yohannan, issued a Special Report on the ugly truths of world hunger: Scandal of Starvation

There are many things wrong with our broken world, from prejudice and violence to modern-day slavery. The United Nations has identified 16 top enemies of humankind, with ambitious aims to tame if not defeat them by 2030. But have you ever paused to wonder what subjects top Jesus’s list of great ills?

4 month old malnourished baby
In March 2016, 4 month-old Farhan Abbas was accompanied by his grandmother to SC Children’s Hospital in Punjab, Pakistan, where he was diagnosed with severe wasting and provided immediate nourishment. © UNICEF/UN0281410/Pirozzi

Hunger is one of them. Shortly before His betrayal, Jesus spoke to His disciples about the coming judgment, when everyone will appear before Him. He told of those who will inherit the kingdom prepared from the foundation of the world, and why.

“For I was hungry and you gave Me food,” he began (Matthew 25:35). He went on to name the thirsty, the strangers, the naked, the sick, and the imprisoned. Meeting their needs was also a reflection of God’s kingdom, He said. But He recognized empty bellies first.

Perhaps that is because it is hard to hear anything else above the rumble of an empty stomach. Words of hope for a better tomorrow—whether practical advice or spiritual encouragement—tend to fall on deaf ears when someone has eaten little or nothing for too long.

Gospel for Asia (GFA) founder K.P. Yohannan said, “If you see a dying man begging on the street, how can you share the Good News with him and not give him something to eat?”

When hunger muffles your hearing, it’s not because of frustration but physiology. When you are hungry, your body starts to do what it can to conserve energy. Like a computer, it shuts down peripheral programs. In the short term, hunger makes it harder for you to concentrate. Over time, it makes it harder for you to understand. You go from not having the desire to learn to not having the ability.

Children standing in line
Every day, many children around the world, don’t get enough nutritious food to eat. But kids enrolled at Bridge of Hope Centers throughout Asia receive a healthy, balanced meal every day, along with a daily education, school supplies, and regular medical checkups.

Consider the student faintings last year that became common at the Augusto D’Aubeterre Lyceum school in Boca de Uchire, Venezuela, in the wake of the country’s severe economic crisis. They occurred because so many students went to class without eating breakfast, or dinner the night before, reported The New York Times. At other schools, children wanted to know if there would be any food before they decided whether to go at all. “You can’t educate skeletal and hungry people,” one teacher said. Hence hunger is not just a desperate and immediate personal issue. It is also a long-term social and global crisis, directly or indirectly causing around 9 million deaths each year—more than AIDS, malaria, and tuberculosis combined. One report has estimated the annual impact on the global economy of malnutrition through lost potential and production to be as much as $3.5 trillion, or $500 for every single person in the world.

That is the financial impact of what Roger Thurow, a Senior Fellow on Global Food and Agriculture at The Chicago Council on Global Affairs, has called malnutrition a “life sentence of underachievement and underperformance.” If you ask why some countries remain poor or why development aid isn’t as effective as possible and doesn’t have the impact many think it should, he said, “it’s because so many kids are getting off to a horrible start in life.”

COVID-19 Accelerates Starvation in Asia

Food distribution at Punjab, India
600 migrant laborers in Punjab jobless due to COVID-19, get food from Bishop Martin Mor Aprem who tries social distancing. “We know the risks. But this is the only food they will get in 2-3 days.”

 

The global COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated hunger fears. Lockdowns and stay-at-home orders brought national economies to a grinding halt overnight, sending unemployment soaring, and instantly plunging hundreds of millions of families into survival mode.

At the grassroots level, millions of furloughed day laborers and agricultural workers—the backbone of the workforce in many developing nations—faced the grim threat of watching their families starve. “These nations are in the hands of God right now,” said Yohannan. “There is a real danger that millions could starve to death.”

In southeast Asia, hundreds of millions of children were immediately at risk, as the lockdown paralyzed entire nations. Huge numbers of street children—estimated at 70,000+ in some cities in Asia alone—had no one to beg from and no one to turn to.

“When a crisis hits, the children are always hit the hardest,” Yohannan said. For more details on this story, go here.

 

Food Insecurity, World Hunger Are Increasing

5-year-old Meena, standing in a sewer
A haunting photo of little Meena in Bombay, India, standing in a sewer, a silent victim of poverty.

In the measured words of officials and academics, those who don’t have enough to eat are victims of “food insecurity,” not knowing if and when they will eat next or whether it will be enough. The impact of hunger is seen in what they call “wasting” and “stunting,” which describe the different ways lack of food keeps someone from developing physically as they should.

In the everyday world, hunger is 5-year-old Meena, who was reduced to begging for scraps from strangers and eating sewage-soaked dirt off the streets of Mumbai, India. Not long after her haunted image was photographed, she went into a coma and died.

It is not only an issue in parts of the world where lack is as clearly obvious, however. People also suffer from hunger in places like Liverpool, England, where one young boy chewed wallpaper at night, not wanting to tell his mother how hungry he was because he knew that she didn’t have any money for supper.

Concerted attempts to eradicate hunger are not new. Though he rallied the collective effort to put a man on the moon in the 1960s, President John F. Kennedy was less successful in achieving another ambitious goal he voiced.

“We have the ability, as members of the human race, we have the means, we have the capacity to eliminate hunger from the face of the earth in our lifetime,” he said. “We need only the will.”

Despite best efforts, from governments to the grassroots, it is not a problem that is going away. Worldwide, hunger increased in 2018 for the third successive year. According to the United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organization, more than 820 million people did not get enough to eat that year.

India accounts for two-thirds of all the malnourished children in the world

The largest concentration of undernourished people is in Asia, especially South Asia, with the region accounting for two-thirds of all the malnourished children in the world. In India, nearly 200 million people are undernourished. The country was ranked 103rd of 119 in the 2018 Global Hunger Index.

According to the UN report, however, Africa “has the highest rates of hunger in the world and [these] are continuing to slowly but steadily rise in almost all subregions.” Indeed, more than a quarter of Africa’s population was classified as food-insecure in 2016, more than four times the rate of any other region. The Global Hunger Index includes six African nations among the ten hungriest worldwide: the Central African Republic, Chad, Madagascar, Zambia, Liberia and Zimbabwe.

“We have the ability, as members of the human race, we have the means, we have the capacity to eliminate hunger from the face of the earth in our lifetime, we need only the will.”
President John F. Kennedy
World Food Congress, June 4, 1963

One small indicator of the seriousness of hunger is that it gets not one but two annual days of international attention. This year’s World Hunger Day (May 28) will focus on “sustainability.” Organized by The Hunger Project, it will emphasize how long-term solutions must address issues interwoven with hunger, such as political instability, the environment and gender inequality. The U.N.’s World Food Day is to be observed October 16, marking the founding of the body’s food and agriculture organization.

Feeding leprosy patients
Gospel for Asia (GFA) workers provide a free meal to those in a leper colony on January 1st, 2018 in Uttar Pradesh, India.

World Hunger’s Ugly Truths Revealed

Each year, Gospel for Asia (GFA) workers recognize the U.N. event with a host of special feeding programs. They take food packages to local communities in need—including homeless people who beg by railway and bus stations—and prepare meals for the residents of leprosy colonies who are ostracized and unable to find work.

Sisters of Compassion comforts a sad mother whose son is sick.
Sisters of Compassion seen here are comforting a sad mother whose son is sick. After praying for them both, they will provide food or supplies to meet their specific needs. Through their loving kindness, lives are being given physical and spiritual nourishment in God’s name.

As Gospel for Asia (GFA) workers provide simple, nutritious food—such as bread, eggs, and bananas, pulse curry and vegetables—they extend a lifeline to people like Lalita. At 32 she had been living by the footpath near a railway station when some of Gospel for Asia (GFA)-supported Sisters of Compassion arrived with food.

“I lost my husband six years ago, after which my family abandoned me, as I am blind,” she told the visitors. “Now, I cannot do any work. Today I am happy that I received this food packet.”

Hunger is ugly on many levels, not least because many of its root causes are human action and inaction—wars, corruption, and environmental mismanagement. Three additional realities make it even more difficult to swallow:

  • There is enough food in the world to go around.
  • A lot of good food just gets thrown away, some merely because it doesn’t look picture-perfect.
  • While millions go hungry because they can’t afford to eat, others spend large amounts of money following fad diets.

Pope Francis called out some of these wrongs in a 2019 World Food Day message: “It is a cruel, unjust and paradoxical reality that, today, there is food for everyone, and yet not everyone has access to it, and that in some areas of the world food is wasted, discarded and consumed in excess, or destined for other purposes than nutrition.”

One third of all produced food is wasted

Improvements in global food production mean that the world produces a harvest big enough to feed everyone on the planet one-and-a-half times over. Yet fully a third of all the food that is produced goes to waste—discarded in production, lost somewhere along the farm-to-table route, or thrown away by end-consumers: restaurants, institutions like hospitals, and families. It has been reckoned that, globally, around $1 trillion worth of food is lost or wasted each year.

Losses before food gets to the consumer are highest in Central and South Asia, reflecting the bigger challenges in the supply chain there. However, North America is high in the overall waste league—some 133 billion pounds each year.

And that’s just considering the immediate value of the food. The wider cost is “a major squandering of resources, including water, land, energy, labor and capital.”


Give Food, Aid to Victims of Hunger & Starvation

Learn about how to bring practical help in Jesus’ name to the suffering and needy, relieving the burdened, rescuing the endangered and revealing God’s compassion to the people of Asia through Gospel for Asia Compassion Services.


Read the rest of Gospel for Asia’s Special Report on The Scandal of Starvation in a World of Plenty: World Hunger’s Ugly Truths Revealed — Part 2, Part 3

This Special Report originally appeared on gfa.org.

Read another Special Report from Gospel for Asia on Poverty: Public Enemy #1 – Eliminating Extreme Poverty Worldwide is Possible, But Not Inevitable.

Learn more by reading this special report from Gospel for Asia: Solutions to Poverty-Line Problems of the Poor & Impoverished — Education’s Impact on Extreme Poverty Eradication.


Click here, to read more blogs on Patheos from Gospel for Asia.

Learn more about Gospel for Asia: Facebook | YouTube | Instagram | LinkedIn | SourceWatch | Integrity | Lawsuit Update | 5 Distinctives | 6 Remarkable Facts | 10 Milestones | Media Room | Scandal of Starvation | Endorsements | 40th Anniversary | Lawsuit Response |

Notable News about Gospel for Asia: FoxNews, ChristianPost, NYPost, MissionsBox


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