Friday, September 11, 2009

Bread for the World on CBS, Sept 27

Mark your calendars for Sept 27. CBS will air a special featuring Bread for the World - "Religion, Politics, and Advocacy"

“Religion, Politics, and Advocacy” is a 30-minute inter-faith special produced by CBS Television. It will air on Sunday, Sept. 27 nationally. Please check your local CBS affiliate for exact air times.

The program follows "citizen advocates" who participate in the Bread for the World's annual Lobby Day in Washington, D.C. This is a Christian advocacy organization, whose mission is to end hunger and poverty throughout the world. We hear from the group's founder and president emeritus, Arthur Simon, and current president, Rev. David Beckmann, as well.


Jessica Bolin said...

I think it's fantastic that these people want to help end hunger and poverty around the world. But there is one thing that has always bothered me...

So many organizations based in the US work so hard to aid other countries with their poverty. What I see is all the homeless and poverty stricken Americans that need that aid just as much.

I feel that we as Americans can provide so much more support to other countries if we ensure that our own citizens are healthy, happy, and well cared for first. If we could provide for all the American's in need, our economy and general moral would be so much higher. Thus, making America in a better position to provide for other countries.

I'm sorry, but I feel like we should take care of ourselves first and foremost... to be stronger for the struggles ahead.

CCYL said...

Thank you for sharing your feelings. You are not alone in your opinion. I offer a few thoughts to consider.

Advocacy organizations like Bread for the World and RESULTS agree with you in that we cannot ignore the suffering in our own country. Bread runs a domestic hunger campaign approximately every other year (past US campaigns have been for food stamps & year's will be focused on US poverty as well). RESULTS also has groups of volunteers with domestic focus that did considerable work to develop our Head Start program (most of them are working on health care now) in addition to groups working on global issues.

Where Bread and RESULTS disagree with you is the notion that this is an either/or them OR help us. We invest only 0.17% of our national budget on international poverty reduction. Considering how many times our military must intervene in countries destabilized by destitute poverty (costing us money and - worse- lives), the savings and benefits to our citizens for eradicating extreme poverty is enormous.

Also, please consider that global health is a local issue. We have all but wiped out tuberculosis here, but because the world hasn't addressed it globally, multi-drug resistant TB developed in poverty hotspots and now is showing up in our borders because it is an airborne disease only a plane ride away.

Lastly, I encourage you to consider the relative scale of poverty. When we speak of poverty in the U.S., it doesn't really come close to the World Bank's definition of extreme on less than $1.25 a day. Generally, even the poorest Americans have access to clean water through public drinking fountains.

I thank you for your comment and encourage you to take your passion for helping those in need to a level of advocacy. Visit Bread at or RESULTS at to get connected and engaged!