February 11th, 2008 11:18 EST
N. Korean food shortage energizes American teens
Seattle, WA -- Devastating floods in North Korea and across Southern Africa are putting millions at risk as critical food shortages loom. Flooding in 11 provinces across North Korea is described as "the worst humanitarian crisis in a decade." August floods there left 300,000 homeless, effectively destroying the year`s rice harvest, making chronic food shortages even worse - this year.
In Zimbabwe, Zambia, Mozambique and Malawi, floods washed away crops, destroying homes and livestock. Thousands face critical food shortages as food prices skyrocket. Now, by participating in World Vision`s 30 Hour Famine, half a million American teens will put a human face on this untold suffering.
Worldwide, 29,000 children will die today of Hunger, Disease and Poverty
Tonight, 850 million people worldwide will go to bed hungry - that`s one out of every six people on earth. 29,000 children die each day from preventable causes like hunger, disease and malnutrition. Chronic poverty, affecting half the people on earth, is the cause. Nearly 3 billion people live on less than $2 a day.
The Cost of Downloading One Song - Can Feed a Child For a Day
This February 22nd & 23rd, half a million teens are participating in the 17th annual 30-Hour Famine, forsaking food for 30 hours to get a taste of what the world`s poorest children face. Prior to the event, teens raise funds by explaining that $30 a month - just $1 a day (the cost of downloading one song for an MP3 player) - can feed and care for a child for 30 days. As they fast, teens consume only water and juice, focusing on local community assistance (food drives, serving in soup kitchens, or homeless shelters).
Where does 30HF money go? This year: North Korea, Malawi and other targeted spots where famine, conflict and other crises make children vulnerable. World Vision has been working in North Korea since 1995, providing food, medicines and clothing. In 1998, work expanded to agricultural and health systems.
Since 1992, students have raised more than $100 million worldwide. In 2007, 30-Hour Famine raised $11.7 million, this year`s goal - $12.5 million. World Vision works in 100 countries, helping approximately 100 million people every year. Visit www.30hourfamine.org or call 800-7-FAMINE for more information.
World Vision hunger experts on North Korea and Malawi are now available for interview.
Media Contacts: Gardi Wilks (Chicago & Central U.S.) 708-366-8389 (office) 708-205-5020 (cell)
Laura Blank (New York & Eastern U.S.) 212-736-2997 (office) 646-245-2496 (cell)
Myrna Gutierrez (Greater Los Angeles) 626-305-7850 (office) 323-377-2432 (cell)
John Yeager (Seattle & Western U.S.) 253-815-2356 (office) 425-765-9845 (cell)
About World Vision - World Vision is a Christian relief and development organization dedicated to helping children and their communities worldwide reach their full potential by tackling the causes of poverty. World Vision serves the world`s poor regardless of a person`s religion, race, ethnicity, or gender. For more information, visit www.worldvision.org.