Living on the Edge of Emergency: Paying the Price of Inaction

from CARE
Published on 01 Sep 2008
In signing up to the Millennium Development Goals, world leaders have comitted to halving extreme poverty and hunger by 2015. By then, nearly =A3100 billion will have already beem spent this century fighting emergencies. Despite this investment, in two yeras since CARE demanded an overhaul of responses to food emergencies, another 100 million people have been pushed into hunger, no longer able to afford food.

Furthermore, the pain of hunger is being felt across the globe - from Afghanistan to Bolivia - as high food prices strip the world's poorest of enough to eat. An average 83 per cent price rice in three years has left families cutting back on meals, children being pulled from school to go to work, and number of beggars on city streets climbing daily. Protest and riots over food prices have been seen on every continent.

The world's poorest people are paying a high price for the international aid system's failure to address the factors keeping them in chronic poverty, and to end predictable food emergencies in Africa. As a result we face a problem more entreched than ever and spreading globally. Rising food prices are now further hampering the world's already faltering progress towards halving hunger.

This reports sets out recent failures, and some successes, of the international aid system's response to hunger in Africa, the new global challenges, and three crucial steps to combating those challenges.