A well-stocked pantry, full fridge, sit at the table with the family for a meal. They are things that those who lead a normal life – even everyday life difficulties – takes them for granted. But, unfortunately,a lot of people in the world suffer from hunger: children due to wars and famines are not growing as they should and fathers that not having a job they can not guarantee livelihood to loved ones.
For this reason the Pope John XXIII Community Association, for the eighth consecutive year, on 29 and 30 October still back in the Italian squares with the campaign “One meal a day”, a fundraiser thanks will continue to provide assistance to over 41,000 people in need every day down at the table in more than 600 reality host, present in 38 countries worldwide. All thanks to the presence of 4 thousand volunteers.
John Paul Ramonda, head of APG23 said:”The ease of ‘throw away’ is a synonym of indifference and insensitivity, the same attitudes that lead to marginalization of many of our fellow citizens, left alone to face the problems and difficulties of life. Our ‘package of pasta’, is a symbol of a new social pact, which allows you to raise yourself by helping others, protecting the right to food: one of the fundamental human rights. ”
Ramonda said that when this right is not respected human dignity is violated. Precisely for this reason, the initiative revolves around the slogan “Dignity starts from here”, to a free offer in exchange for which volunteers deliver to the benefactors a packet of pasta for just over 100 grams, a portion, which is the meal for a day.
The offerings collected are used to give continuity to facilities like “LA capanna di Betlemme” in Bologna, a house that welcomes homeless. A company that fails, the difficulty in finding a job, shame and guilt are the causes that sometimes a man finds himself living on the street, which puts them at the margins of society until they become almost invisible. The volunteers every night go to the train station, bring food and drinks to the homeless that there they found shelter for the night and invite them inside the structure where they will spend the night. Inside the hut people have the opportunity to take a shower, sit at a table and eat with the others. Is the charism that distinguishes the association founded by Don Oreste Benzi from other organizations involved in the same case: the direct sharing of life. Open the doors of their homes and their lives to share the daily routine with the poor, the marginalized.
Next weekend the volunteers will be present in more than 1,000 squares of Italy, England, Holland, Germany, Portugal, Switzerland, Russia, Bolivia and Chile. This year, with the campaign “One meal a day”, it aims to raise awareness public opinion against the culture of waste. And try to do it through a small recipe book, will be delivered along with the packet of pasta, with instructions to prepare simple and delicious dishes using leftovers from the day before, or the parts of vegetables and fruits that are usually thrown in the trash, as the peels of apple or watermelon.
The waste problem, in fact, severely affecting our economy. According to Coldiretti, the monetary value of food waste amounts to 12.5 billion. Of these, 54% came from own consumption, 15% from catering, agriculture 8% and 2% by the transformation. If we consider that in 2015 the poor in our country have exceeded 4 million and a half (a record figure compared to 10 years ago), it captures how the improvement of living conditions can also switch from one fight to the culture of excess.