Miriam, 2, and Fatiamata, 4, share breakfast outside their home in a displacement camp in Segou, Mali. Photo by Jake Lyell for LWR. 

World Food Day: Four places we’re worried about hunger

Our neighbors who live with chronic hunger are never far from our minds. Climate change, the pandemic, disasters and conflict keep millions locked in poverty and food insecurity. The World Food Program says the number of severely hungry people has doubled in the past year thanks to the challenges of COVID-19.

Here are four places where we particularly worry about people enduring hunger, and where your love reaches neighbors in need.

1. Yemen

Billed as "the world’s worst humanitarian crisis," Yemen's civil war has forced more than 16 million people into food insecurity. Civilian deaths and enduring hardship have cut life expectancy to an average age of 64. See how your love makes a difference even in the face of such stark need.

2. Sahel

Increasing desertification and political instability mean conflict is growing in Africa's Sahel, a vast area south of the Sahara Desert. This region of the African continent is "a true epicentre of conflict and insecurity, weak governance, chronic underdevelopment and poverty, demographic pressures, and climate change," UN Humanitarian Leader Mark Lowcock said in October 2020. "Nowhere scares me more than the Sahel. It is very close to a tipping point– and so by extension are its African neighbors, Europe, and the world." Learn more about the Sahel, and how your love reaches neighbors in dire circumstances.

3. Central America

The COVID-19 pandemic and disastrous hurricanes have dealt heavy blows to neighbors in Latin America. Markets have been shuttered to limit coronavirus infection, and powerful storms have claimed crops to such a degree that farmers and laborers alike face hunger. See how your love helps to sustain neighbors even when the pandemic curbs your usual reach.

4. South Sudan

The world's youngest country is haunted by the colonization and wars of its past, and the conflicts of its present. The World Food Program reports hunger is now at its worst since South Sudan gained independence in 2011. Ongoing conflict and seasonal flooding force people to flee continuously, which makes surviving off crops alone difficult. Your love reaches neighbors in need here with emergency food assistance as well as sustainable solutions like farming support. See how.

As we approach World Food Day on October 16, please remember your neighbors who live with hunger every day and pray with us for justice, mercy and plenty for all.