Reflections on the Hunger Challenge

We’re in the final stretch of the Hunger Challenge and the topic of the day amongst those of us who participated is what we’re going to eat tomorrow.

“A big cheeseburger. And no one’s going to stop me,” declared Mark.

Me? I’m celebrating with a giant, warm cinnamon roll for breakfast at 8:01 a.m.

While we all agreed we missed our comfort foods this week, none of us found the challenge to be overly difficult. In fact, Chelsey went so far as to say she was disappointed that the amount of money we were allotted wasn’t less. Some of us have decided to continue certain aspects of it, like eating less sugar or sticking to a smaller daily food budget. Now that we know it’s possible, we feel inspired to give more and eat less.

Hunger Challenge participants
World Concern staff members (l to r) Mark Lamb, Erin Lamb, Chelsey Chen and Cathy Herholdt, participated in the Global Hunger Challenge this week.

Here are some other thoughts from World Concern participants.

“Erin and I have begun training for a half marathon. It’s actually the first race that we’ve trained for together for, but we’ve both run regularly since we married. As I ran tonight I began to think about the millions of people around the world without enough food to make it through the day, and I was ashamed.  I was ashamed because I recognized that my consistent exercise has always been primarily about burning off the extra food that I eat each day. I have to run to reduce the side effects of eating more than my share. Embarassing. I eat more than my share while others go hungry.

Reducing the amount of food I eat is only a small step, but donating the extra money I would save to organizations like World Concern will make a significant difference in someone’s life” – Mark

“Bored with my food is how I would describe it. I was never hungry, always had what I needed, but was bored with eating the same thing day after day. This feeling of being bored actually made me feel really ashamed. How blessed am I to eat tuna or peanut butter and banana every day, when people around the world are eating the same rice?

The fact that I was bored, made me realize how much emphasis I put on food—what kind of food will I be making? Where are we going to go out to eat? I look forward to eating meals and look forward to trying to cook new things, or trying out new restaurants. These things make me happy. These things are luxuries—luxuries most of the world does not have.

Someone asked me the other day what comfort foods I missed during the challenge. This question made me really think. That’s the thing: I often eat out of comfort, not necessity. Doing this challenge, I had all the necessary food I needed; I was not starving. It made me realize that so many times a day I make decisions out of my need to feel comfortable. Why do I even feel the right to feel comfortable? God did not call us to feel comfortable.” – Erin

For us, this challenge has come to an end. For millions of people, the challenge is a daily reality. If the purpose of the Hunger Challenge was to raise our awareness about food insecurity, it definitely did just that.

Published by

Cathy Herholdt

Cathy Herholdt

Cathy Herholdt is World Concern's Marketing and Communications Director. With a background in journalism, Cathy honed her writing skills as a newspaper editor and now enjoys sharing the inspiring stories of those World Concern serves. She has served with World Concern since 2010.

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