Anti-hunger signatories surpass 250 000
03.08.2010 12:59 "Agro Perspectiva" (Kyiv) —
More than 250 000 people have already signed an FAO petition on the 1billionhungry.org website calling on governments to make the elimination of hunger their top priority as the eye-catching campaign spreads across the globe.
«The ball is now rolling and we are on track to meet our goal of one million signatures by the end of November,» said FAO Director General Jacques Diouf. «I encourage everyone to sign the online petition to show their solidarity with the one billion hungry.»
The petition should be signed by anyone who «finds it unacceptable that close to one billion people are chronically hungry. We call upon governments to make the elimination of hunger their top priority until that goal is reached,» it says.
One of the tools for the campaign is a promotional video made by British actor Jeremy Irons in which he plays a character based on a famous scene from the 1970s classic film «Network.»
It also uses innovative software developed by Prof. Riley Crane, post-doctoral fellow at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Media Laboratory, which allows users to visualize their personal impact on a world map as their friends pass on the link. The Google map also keeps continuous track of the number of signatures in each country.
Friend-to-friend contacts through Facebook and other social media platforms are the key means by which news of the petition is spreading. A new Facebook application now enables users to sign the petition and encourage friends and family to sign all within Facebook.
The World Food Summit of 1996 attended by 185 countries agreed the target of reducing the number of hungry people by half to no more than 420 million by 2015.
However, if the world continues at the current pace of hunger reduction we will only reach that target by 2150, with hundreds of millions of needless deaths and incalculable suffering as a result.
The FAO campaign uses a yellow whistle as a campaign icon, signifying enough is enough. Banners encouraging people to sign the petition have now been translated into 13 languages.