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Global Conversation: Zero Hunger

This is the second chapter of our Global Conversation series, relating to the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals. If you’ve missed the previous post, you can find it here.

Zero hunger

Today we are going to look at Goal 2: Zero Hunger. 

This goal aims to achieve zero hunger, provide food security and improved nutrition, and promote sustainable agriculture. 

815 million people were considered to be undernourished in 2016, increased by 38 million from 2015. By 2017, 151 million children under age 5 suffered from stunting, 51 million suffered from wasting, and 38 million were overweight. 

A Demographic and Health survey that was taken in 2016 defined stunting as a measurement of chronic undernutrition which shows a history of inadequate nutrients in a child’s diet. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), High Severity malnutrition can lead to. With 35.8% of children under 5 affected, Nepal has one of the highest levels of stunting in the world.

Nepalese children eating nutritious food

How is Himalayan Life addressing this goal?

Our first point of contact with children in need is at the Street Kitchen. The street children can visit here and be fed two nutritious meals a day. We provide warm food to all the kids who come. They are welcomed regardless of their state, whether high or sober.

Our first point of contact with children in need is at the Street Kitchen. This is where the street children come to be fed two nutritious meals a day. Food is not given based on their state so whether high or sober, these kids are welcomed and given warm food. Throughout 2019, we were able to provide 376,220 meals to children in need!

Most children who live on the street have often spent most of their upbringing away from home. They scavenge to survive and are reliant on glue sniffing to deal with the hunger and emotional pain they have endured. The reality of stunting in this demographic of children in Nepal is not hard to point out. Although most children don’t know their official birthdates, their stated age would not be guessed by their small frames. Growing up either on the streets or in homes without the means to provide enough food, these children have experienced intense nutrient deficiencies that will affect their bodies for life. 

Street kitchen non-profit charity project
Our Street Kitchen staff, June 2020

At the Street Kitchen, we address this emergency need for food, but we also hope that the children’s road to recovery does not stop at just receiving a meal. We encourage the children to go to our other facilities like the Shelter to be in places of security and routine for more than a couple hours a day. Here they will be fed with more than just food, but with knowledge and experiences to provide them the tools to some day feed themselves.

During COVID, the Street Kitchen has been unable to function within its regular capacity. As lockdown loosened in Nepal over the last few weeks, more kids were found back on the street. Our dedicated staff saw this and came together in order to prepare meals to go, delivering them to those left alone throughout this pandemic. COVID has forced our team to work creatively in order to interact with the street kids, changing the way we reach them. Our staff has worked tirelessly to prevent these children from slipping through the cracks during this period.

For more information on our Street Kitchen, visit our Projects page.

To learn more about the Sustainable Development Goals, visit the UN page.