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“One of these things is not like the others, one of these things just doesn’t belong, can you tell which thing is not like the others by the time I finish my song?

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Did you guess which thing was not like the others? Did you guess which thing just doesn’t belong? If you guessed this one is not like the others, then you’re absolutely…right!”   Sesame Street

All six cups are red.

All are containers.

Five hold drinks.

One is a Pioneer of Peace.

How Can a Red Cup Be a Pioneer of Peace You Ask?

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It’s simple but elegant. The Red Cup and its army of clones feed 20 million children in the poorest regions of the world. It is both the vessel and symbol for The United Nations World Food Program’s (WFP), Fill the Cup Campaign, created to raise awareness and funds for 59 million children who are suffering from hunger.

 “The campaign slogan and logo are based on the millions of plastic cups that WFP uses to handout porridge or other food rations to millions of school children around the world.” http://www.wfp.org/node/7863

Kudos to the Red Cup because according to WFP…

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– It feeds on average 20 million children a day

– It serves in 70 developing countries

– It promotes education by providing food at school

– It encourages girls to receive an education, preventing early marriage and pregnancy

– It provides all the daily essential nutrients to maintain health in one, 25 cent serving

– It provides relief and hope to both parents and children

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It was 1969, and the awards night for our Annual  6th Grade Science Fair.  I didn’t want to go to the event, but my parents informed me we WERE going. To this day I don’t think they knew in advance that I had won first prize, because when we arrived and saw the blue ribbon hanging on my simple red poster we were all speechless.

Earlier that morning my fellow classmates and I submitted our entries to be viewed and voted on throughout the day by students, teachers, and other so called important people. There were elaborate electronic contraptions, the most impressive being projects that obviously had a lot of parental collaboration.

My mother helped me with mine, but it was very simple. I’m not exactly a left brained person so I struggled with what on earth my science project could be. Did I mention it was mandatory?

Biafra was all over the headlines in 1969, so it was no surprise that one afternoon while walking through the kitchen, I spotted a Life magazine sitting on the counter featuring a photo of starving children. That moment my inner social worker roared to the surface, and I made the decision to risk ridicule and write a report on world hunger, highlighting Biafra.

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A report and a red poster featuring a paper doll, collaged from newspaper photos depicting victims of hunger became my entry. Thinking about it now; it must have looked malnourished itself, hidden behind the elaborate electronic contraptions, mini green houses, and models of how the body works.

Last night while writing this post, I decided to see what happened to Biafra, and found out it had lost it’s independence, and is once again part of Nigeria.

Strangely after googling it, an article called “Who Cares About Biafra Anyway?” written by The Harvard Crimson, came up on the search page.

The weird thing was, it was dated February 25, 1969. Well that’s odd, I thought. How bizarre to happen upon an article written in the same year I did my science project. I began reading it with great interest and the first paragraph brought back childhood emotional memories, reminding me of why I chose Biafra for my project.

Between Aug 1968 and Feb 1969, one million, YES, one million people starved to death in Biafra.  The article went on stating, at that time there were five thousand Harvard grad students. If each student died 200 times, it would equal a million.

I am grateful for an elementary school that was brave enough to take a stand, by recognizing the atrocity of world hunger over other fancy science projects. I’m guessing the school administration had to deal with many disgruntled parents.

Re-creation of my 6th grade science project

Re-creation of my 6th grade science project

7 Facts From The Hunger Project 

1.    870 million people do not have enough food to eat

2.    98% of the worlds undernourished people live in developing countries

Starving Children in North Korea

3.    Asia and the Pacific have the highest number of hungry comprising 578 million people, followed by Sub-Saharan Africa with 239 million people, and then Latin America and the Caribbean with 53 million people

4.    60% of the worlds hungry are women

5.    Malnutrition is the key factor contributing to one-third of all global deaths (2.6 million per year).

6.    Every 5 seconds, a child dies from hunger related diseases

7.    There is enough food in the world today for everyone to have the nourishment necessary for a healthy and productive life

5 Reasons Why You Should Care

1.    Because basic nutrition is identified under Article 25 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights as an integral right of every human being

2.    Because hunger is the number one global risk to health, killing more annually than malaria, AIDS and tuberculosis combined

3.    Because solving chronic hunger creates peace and stability in the world

4.    Because the suffering of men, women and children is unacceptable

5.    Because there IS enough food, yet people are not receiving it

7 Ways to Show You Care

1.   Be in the Know and inform others. Go to http://www.wfp.org to learn the facts

2.    Express genuine gratitude for what you have

3.    Don’t Be Wasteful. One of the main reasons people are not getting food is that it spoils before it even arrives. Think about that the next time you’re cleaning out your fridge.

4.    Live Simply, So Others Might Simply Live  -Gandhi  Be satisfied with what is sufficient for your needs, freeing up resources for others.

5.    Be Mindful. Be awake, slow down, see what is real.  Eat you’re own food slowly, appreciating it’s life sustaining purpose

6.    Claim Your Inner Pioneer of Peace. Stand up for what your heart knows is right. The true mark of a resilient person is the recognition of suffering and the desire to heal

7.    Give. Share your abundance with others. Play Free Rice, the worlds only vocabulary game that feeds the hungry. http://www.freerice.com  Check it out. It’s a good addictionPlay Freerice and feed the hungryShare food, change livesTest Your Hunger IQ

 We Are Global Citizens:

Have you ever pondered your role as a citizen of the world? Like it or not, as human beings we share this planet and it’s resources. We truly are all connected. Many question why there is such a disparity between the haves and the have nots, and of course there are answers; but none is acceptable.

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Lead by Eleanor Roosevelt, on December 10, 1948, The United Nations General Assembly signed The Universal Declaration of Human Rights. It was the first global expression of rights to which all human beings are inherently entitled. The following countries voted in favor of the declaration

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Universal_Declaration_of_Human_Rights

SHOCKING ISN”T IT? Many of the countries listed above are shamefully the worst offenders. Clearly, governments are not taking adequate responsibility for their citizens.  As global citizens, what is our responsibility? Each person must answer that question for themselves. What are you thoughts? Please share what you think by pressing the comment button but first…

Take 17 minutes to watch the Ted Talk below that changed my life.

I really mean it! It changed my life!

Where can I get a red cup?

No, I REALLY MEAN IT; WHERE CAN I GET A RED CUP?

 

I will be taking a break from my weekend posts for the next couple of weeks, while I try my hand at guest blogging. I will continue to post Weekly Wellness Check-in on Mondays, and Wednesday’s Words of Wisdom on Wednesdays. If you like what you have read please share it with your friends and follow me by pressing the follow button at the top of the page. Thanks everyone for helping me build my audience.

Until next time, Shine On 🙂

Barbara