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The Des Moines Register posted an article and interview today with World Food Prize laureates David Beckmann, president of Bread for the World, and Jo Luck, Heifer International’s president. The World Food Prize Symposium is being held this week in Des Moines, Iowa, with the official presentation coming tonight.
From Philip Brasher’s interview in the Register:
Q: But doesn’t humanitarian aid often foster dependency?
Luck: It does, if they don’t help people become self-reliant. Don’t just hand it out and deliver it and leave. That is not sustainable. That’s why I believe so much in the work we do and others with this kind of approach working beyond the disaster assistance or emergency assistance. Give them a few resources, give them a few animals and some training and you can’t hold them back. They may not all be a millionaire, but they’re going to be successful. They’re going to be proud and making decisions and they’re going to be influencing the government.
Beckmann: The U.S. government’s world hunger initiative is focused on countries that have good policies in place and are investing their own money in agriculture.
Luck: So it’s more sustainable.
Beckmann: Where you have dubious results is where local people aren’t doing what they should be doing. In poor countries that have their act together and are using their own money, well, there are lots of opportunities.

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Heifer International

Heifer International is a nonprofit, non-governmental organization working with communities to end hunger and poverty while caring for the Earth.