Moses loves the alphabet.  He is in the "Baby Class" (kindergarten) at the little primary school tucked away among the fields of corn. Every morning, when the time comes to recite the alphabet, he shouts the "A, B, C, Ds..." as loud as he can without getting scolded.

Really, Moses loves everything about school. He loves lining up with his class. He loves the counting. He loves learning to write his name. He loves the row of picture books carefully stacked on the rough piece of lumber that serves as the bookshelf for his classroom. He loves the exercises the class does outside in a big circle around the teacher under the morning sunshine.

The only thing that diminishes Moses' delight about going to school is how hungry his belly gets sometimes. Like most of the families in the village, Moses' family cannot really afford more than two meals a day for their children. And there are plenty of days when one meal is the best they can do.  Moses still shouts his ABCs and his picture books, but it does dampen his smile a bit when his belly is empty and aching.

I have often thought that the world's governments should consider hiring my mother to solve the problem of world hunger. If you enter her house, she will have a fruit platter and an assortment of snacks at the ready within no more than 5 minutes flat. She will feed dozens of people without blinking an eye, and there is always food to spare. My mother would make sure that no child ever goes to bed hungry.

Sadly, my mother's skills have not yet been deployed to combat global malnutrition. Hunger and malnutrition are still the number one threats to the health of children and adults worldwide. The numbers are insane -870 million people worldwide (1 in 8!) suffering from undernutrition. Syria. Zimbabwe. Ethiopia. The world's children are hungry.

Know. Act. Love. I'm still a fan of this 3-step plan to address the world's mind-boggling problems.

So here is an act that helps Moses - and the rest of his class - keep smiling and learning and bouncing through the school day: pour them a small meal of porridge. One cup, and a kindergarten class is reborn into the vigorous little learners that they should be.


I'm even happy to say that my mom helped with that. (This is how I say happy birthday to my mom. I'm always giving away her presents in distant places. But I know she loves to feed people.)

Posted at 15:17


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