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Thursday, July 16, 2009

African Food Security: Obama’s Administration on Right Track

Just as the numbers of hungry people on the planet are reaching a historic high, we are seeing positive signs of change, at least so far as American policy is concerned.

In connection with his recent visit to Africa, Barack Obama released a statement indicating that the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) is preparing to significantly retool its approach to food aid.

Rather than continue to spend its aid dollars on food that is transported to hungry communities, his administration intends to invest into African agriculture, or more to the point, the ability of African farmers to feed themselves. So instead of receiving a sack of American-grown grain, a villager in Malawi might receive the tools and training to grow a better crop himself.

This reflects a growing sense - one that has always informed HOPE International Development Agency's approach - that self-reliance needs to be the end goal of all so-called ‘charity’. We, in our eagerness to help, must always be evaluating whether our aid leaves people truly better off. It is encouraging to see that the American government is taking up this theme and seemingly running with it.

Learn more about helping families in the developing world become self-reliant by visiting www.hope-international.com today.

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