We recently announced that Share Our Strength will contribute to three organizations working to aid children and their families in the Syrian refugee crisis: Save the Children, the World Food Programme and Mercy Corps. These may seem like unusual grants for us, an organization working to end childhood hunger in the U.S., so I’m writing to share how they are important to our mission and history.
Since 2010, our priority has been to make sure every child in America has the healthy food they need, every day, through the No Kid Hungry campaign. It will continue to be our focus until the job is done.
Still, we’ve never forgotten our roots. Billy and I still clearly remember that day in 1984 when we felt compelled to act on behalf of people suffering from hunger and starvation oceans away in Ethiopia. We’ve stayed true our original mission through limited, strategic investments to build food security in some of the most vulnerable places in the world.
The scale of suffering of the refugees in Syria cries out for urgent and compassionate action. According to Save the Children, an estimated 9 million Syrians have fled their homes. The need for basic resources like food, water and shelter is overwhelming and organizations are challenged to keep pace with that need. Read what the New York Times had to say about the most severely impacted regions here.
Much like that day in 1984, and during the catastrophic events we’ve seen since, like Hurricane Katrina or the earthquake in Haiti, we feel a duty to support children in crisis, wherever they are. Through contributions to these three well-respected organizations working in Syria, we seek to build on lessons from our domestic work and bring some measure of relief to these families.
I found Bono’s words particularly inspiring in response to this crisis, “Where you live should not determine whether you live or whether you die.”
Thanks for your ongoing support of Share Our Strength,
Co-Founder, Share Our Strength