Globally, one in eight people goes to bed hungry every night. On November 19 from 5 to 7 pm, New Century College’s (NCC’s) Social Action and Integrative Learning (SAIL) program will host a hunger banquet in the HUB Ballroom to provide attendees a first-hand look at hunger and the political, economic and environmental issues that lead to hunger. Spoiler alert: food production is not the primary problem.
With support from Oxfam International, SAIL will join with hundreds of other university campuses to host hunger banquets this year. Oxfam has created a resource kit and event program that is available for organizations to use. An Oxfam representative will speak at the event, providing attendees with information about the causes of hunger globally and in the local community. Following the presentation and meal, small groups will discuss different aspects of hunger. The event is free and open to all. SAIL hopes to have 150 to 200 people attend.
SAIL student coordinator Kathleen Welch (2015, criminology) is organizing the event and said, “It is shocking to think that we actually have enough food to feed everyone, but it’s not that easy. There are deeper systemic problems that intertwine to create this problem, even here in Northern Virginia. We have students who are homeless and struggle to access everything they need, including nutritious meals.”
SAIL has invited community partners and campus organizations to join the event and share their group’s efforts assisting those who experience hunger in our own community. Such groups as Our Daily Bread, Northern Virginia Family Services, Mason Meals and FACETS, among others, have sent representatives in years past.
SAIL associate director, Patty Mathison said, “Every year, I’m amazed by the thoughtful comments and great participation that I see at the hunger banquet. It’s a powerful way for people to learn about hunger and the issues that contribute to it.”
Event information is available at http://sail.gmu.edu/events/4358.