A recently released report by several UN agencies shows that the number of hungry people has declined despite rise in population. It was one billion about 25 years ago and is about 795 million today. In the developing world 23.3% of the population was hungry 25 years ago. Today it is 12.9%. Progress is more pronounced in East Asia, Southeast and Central Asia, Latin America and the Caribbean. The reasons for the success are attributed to stable political conditions and economic growth. The report does not omit failures, mainly in Africa where in some areas
more than one in three people remain hungry and the reasons for the failures can easily be surmised, extreme weather, natural disasters, political instability and civil strife.
We so often feel disheartened about the state of the world. We hear or read about the news and wonder if things are getting worse. And so 200 less million hungry people in the world hopefully serves to make us think that things may not be as bad as we may sometimes feel they are. It is more than a statistic, besides the lives and conditions of these millions, the report speaks to the many agencies, organizations, NGOs who work to make it happen, and of course the hundreds, if not thousands of people it took to bring that about. As long as we care whether or not there is hunger in the world, and whether the numbers diminish, there has to be hope for all of us and for the planet.