ELCA World Hungerhttp://elca.org/News-and-Events/blogs/ELCAWorldHunger/2015 ELCA World Hunger Education & Networking Grants - apply now!Gina Tonnhttp://elca.org/News-and-Events/blogs/ELCAWorldHunger/646http://elca.org/News-and-Events/blogs/ELCAWorldHunger/646<div class="ExternalClass06336CA4962047BA83A55880B7156B16"><p><strong>ELCA World Hunger Education and Networking Grants</strong></p><p><em>2015 Request for Proposals </em></p><p>The ELCA World Hunger Education and Networking grants program is designed to support local programs in ELCA congregations, groups and/or synods. The grant opportunity encourages ELCA congregation, groups and/or synods to think creatively about educating, mobilizing, and expanding their networks to increase awareness of the root causes of and solutions to hunger. </p><p>Education grants can be used for events, educational programs or the development of shareable resources. For networking proposals, congregation-based and synod-based hunger leader events and trainings will be prioritized. </p><p>We are looking for proposals submitted by a non-profit charitable organization classified as a 501(c)(3) public charity by the Internal Revenue Service, or organization that operates under the fiscal sponsorship of a 501(c)(3). Proposals must&#58;</p><ol><li>Provide a short (2-3 paragraphs) description of your congregation, group or organization and a narrative of the context in which the project, event or initiative will take place. This should clearly show what your program, congregation or group is attempting to address and how the proposal relates to the current priorities of ELCA World Hunger Education and Networking. </li><li>Summarize how the project, event or initiative will&#58; </li><ol><li>Educate and engage ELCA congregations, groups, and/or synods;</li><li>Influence this church body toward better action and engagement against hunger and poverty; and</li><li>Encourage sustainable participation in the anti-hunger work of ELCA World Hunger past the conclusion of the project, event or initiative. </li></ol><li>Provide a clear &quot;goal statement&quot; that summarizes the direction and focus of the program and defines the scope. </li><li>For education proposals, please list the learning objectives and audience for the event, resource or initiative which the grant will support.</li><li>List two or three specific, measurable outcomes by which the success of your proposal will be evaluated.</li><ol><li>At least one <em>process outcome</em>&#58; What activities will be completed in what specific time period?</li><li>At least one <em>impact outcome</em>&#58; What are the expected results – what change, by how much, where and when?</li></ol><li>Summarize the implementation strategies and methods and/or sustainability of your plan (identifying additional sources of funding if needed). If the project, event or initiative is an annual or cyclical occurrence, or you have previously applied for an ELCA World Hunger Education and Networking Grant, please include a summary of how you plan to create a self-sustaining program or how the program has grown and changed since the last grant received. </li><li>Demonstrate an ELCA connection with one letter of support by an ELCA pastor, bishop, or Lutheran agency/institution that explains how a relationship between the organization and ELCA World Hunger impacts/enhances each other's work and furthers the objectives and guidelines of ELCA World Hunger. </li><li>Include your organization's name, address, contact person, email, phone number, and tax ID number with your proposal.</li><li>The amount of funding you are seeking in a budget for the event, project or initiative using the format below&#58;</li></ol><table width="100%" cellspacing="0" class="ms-rteTable-default"><tbody><tr><td class="ms-rteTable-default" style="width&#58;33.33%;"><strong>Item</strong></td><td class="ms-rteTable-default" style="width&#58;33.33%;"><strong>Amount</strong></td><td class="ms-rteTable-default" style="width&#58;33.33%;"><strong>Explanation</strong></td></tr><tr><td class="ms-rteTable-default">Put the line item label here.</td><td class="ms-rteTable-default">Put the line item cost here.</td><td class="ms-rteTable-default">Describe how you came to that amount (show your calculations, if relevant). You may also use this section to further explain why you need this cost covered, if you believe that is not clear from the proposal.</td></tr></tbody></table><p>&#160;</p><p>Proposals will be reviewed throughout the year. All proposals must be received by <strong>December 31, 2015</strong> to be considered for funding. </p><p>If you have any questions please email <a href="mailto&#58;hunger@elca.org"><span style="text-decoration&#58;underline;"><em>hunger@elca.org</em></span></a>. </p></div>12/01/2015Hungry. And surrounded by foodJenny Sharrickhttp://elca.org/News-and-Events/blogs/ELCAWorldHunger/664http://elca.org/News-and-Events/blogs/ELCAWorldHunger/664<div class="ExternalClass410666EF58464A4A9759D939815074DB"><p>August 3, 2015<br></p><p><br></p><p>I have a very complex relationship with food. I absolutely love it. My favorite food changes almost daily because there are so many incredible ones from which to choose. So many flavors to experience within a short life. But often food does not love me. Or perhaps, a better way to explain it is that my body does not love food. You see, I have an intestinal disorder called Crohn's disease. It means that portions of my 22 feet of small intestines can become ulcerated (like a bunch of open sores, but on the inside) and inflamed. Crohn's disease, along with ulcerative colitis, is part of a group of diseases known as Inflammatory Bowel Disorders (IBD), which affect 1.6 million Americans.<sup>1</sup> </p><p>Personally, I don't like to draw attention to my illness and generally I give a non-committal non-answer when people ask how it affects me&#58; &quot;I have good days and bad days; but I'm always hopeful for more good than bad.&quot; It's hard to talk about an illness that is invisible to everyone else. It's even harder to talk about an illness when it presents with the symptoms of Crohn's. And sometimes, I would just rather pretend that my body is healthy and that nothing is wrong. But the reality is that it always affects my body and sometimes it means I'm in excruciating pain when I eat. &#160;</p><p>But the worst part of all is not the lack of food. It's the lack of fellowship. We encounter Christ at The Table. And we encounter Christ around our tables at home with friends, family, and new acquaintances. When we want to &quot;catch up&quot; with others, the first instinct is to grab lunch, ice cream or go for coffee. Without the ability to eat, it becomes nearly impossible for fellowship, communion, and emotional support. </p><p>Crohn's can be so isolating. I can find ways to sneak in enough calories to survive until tomorrow with easily digested foods such as pureed baby food or nutritional shakes, but it's harder to find ways to sneak in authentic time and experiences with friends that don't end up exhausting me further. It's hard to find those moments to say &quot;I really need to be in fellowship with you, but I can't continue to pretend like going out for Indian food isn't the worst idea I've had all week. Can we just sit here on my couch and chat without any refreshments?&quot; </p><p>I spend a lot of my life thinking about various aspects food. My favorite de-stressing activity is to bake any and all desserts (I'd be lying if I didn't say I also love eating desserts, too!). I'm always in search of a good recipe on Pinterest. I am on my synod's &quot;(anti-) hunger team&quot; within the ELCA. My congregation is involved in anti-hunger ministries including a food pantry and a food co-op. My research focus for my Masters in Public Health (MPH) is rural food insecurity. I even come from a long line of food-growers. Some day I will inherit one and a half farms in Nebraska (although truthfully I know very little about the actual process of growing food other than what I've gleaned from my unsuccessful ventures in gardening and what I've heard about the process of farming around the dinner table growing up). The thing I'm most looking forward to when I return home to Nebraska is my weekly bag of vegetables, fruits, cheeses, eggs, honey and freshly baked bread from local farmers and producers. </p><p>Even after all that thinking and reflecting on different aspects of food, I still struggle daily with what it means to come to the T(t)able and not be able to eat, regardless of the reason. </p><p>Food is everywhere. It's engrained in my life and also in yours. It's in the news (the newest fad diets, research about what we should or should not eat, advertising campaigns about food), and it's in our homes and most places we visit. It makes sense. Food is literally life-sustaining. But now, more than ever, I can recognize how much fear and anxiety food can cause for people. </p><p>I have never been without access to enough food. I've been lucky enough to be food secure my whole life. I've always known that I can find food. But I can resonate with the 49 million people in the United States who are food insecure.<sup>2</sup> Even more so with those who are food insecure <em>and </em>have IBD, an eating disorder or a food allergy.</p><p>I am often also hungry for the communion with others that comes from breaking bread, salad and casserole around the table. </p><p>Sometimes &quot;feeding the hungry&quot; also includes those of us who would give anything to be seated with you, but can't. Can't because of allergies. Can't because our psychological relationship with food is disordered, for example, by anorexia, bulimia, or other eating disorders. Or can't because of tiny pockets of inflammation that we don't like talking about. </p><p>We are often surrounded by a sea of food but still drowning in our inability to eat any of it. </p><p><br></p><p><em>Jenny Sharrick is the 2015 summer intern with Constituent Engagement with ELCA World Hunger.</em><br></p><p>&#160;</p><p><sup>1</sup> <a href="http&#58;//online.ccfa.org/site/PageServer?pagename=TS_homepage">http&#58;//online.ccfa.org/site/PageServer?pagename=TS_homepage</a><sup> </sup></p><p><sup>2</sup><a href="http&#58;//www.feedingamerica.org/hunger-in-america/our-research/map-the-meal-gap/child-food-insecurity-executive-summary.html?referrer=https&#58;//www.google.com/">http&#58;//www.feedingamerica.org/hunger-in-america/our-research/map-the-meal-gap/child-food-insecurity-executive-summary.html?referrer=https&#58;//www.google.com/</a></p><p>&#160;</p><p>&#160;</p><p>&#160;</p></div>08/03/2015Water-Related Activities for YouthAnna Smithhttp://elca.org/News-and-Events/blogs/ELCAWorldHunger/663http://elca.org/News-and-Events/blogs/ELCAWorldHunger/663<div class="ExternalClass7BF5C70F69EC473EB72260445A27ACB8"><p style="text-decoration&#58;underline;"><strong>ELCA Walk for Water</strong></p><p><span style="font-size&#58;11pt;line-height&#58;115%;font-family&#58;&quot;calibri&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;;"><a href="http&#58;//download.elca.org/ELCA%20Resource%20Repository/ELCAWFWDoItYourself.pdf?_ga=1.233895518.1771666077.1433451549"><span>Do-it-Yourself Track Experience</span></a></span> ELCA World Hunger</p><p>This guide features all the information necessary to recreate the interaction Walk for Water track in your own community or congregation. </p><p><br></p><p><span style="text-decoration&#58;underline;"><strong>Local/ Personal Context&#58;</strong></span></p><p><a href="https&#58;//d3n8a8pro7vhmx.cloudfront.net/polarisinstitute/pages/85/attachments/original/1424217600/SCI_Investigating_Local_Water_%28FINAL%29.pdf?1424217600">Community Mapping</a> Pg. 6. Produced by Polaris Institute. </p><p>A lesson that gives youth the chance to explore water in the place they call home and create a local context by mapping out the water resources in their surrounding area.</p><p><br></p><p><a href="http&#58;//pov-tc.pbs.org/pov/film-files/pov_thirst_lessonplan_lesson_plan_0.pdf">Lesson Plan&#58; 'Thirst</a>' Written by Terri Carta. Produced by PBS. </p><p>This is a discussion guide to supplement the hour long documentary <em>Thirst.</em> Although the full video is currently unavailable online, this guide is an important learning and activity resource. It touches on themes of water privatization and The Commons. The guide features a mock town hall meeting activity surrounding the city council, citizens and water supplier's role in privatization issues.</p><p><br></p><p><a href="https&#58;//d3n8a8pro7vhmx.cloudfront.net/polarisinstitute/pages/88/attachments/original/1420756456/CIV_Water_Perspectives_-_Conflict___Action_%28FULL%29.pdf?1420756456">Water Bingo</a> Pg. 7. Produced by Polaris Institute. </p><p>This game allows youth to interact with each other by filling out spaces with information like &quot;has heard of or been to a protest to protect water,&quot; or &quot;has had to boil or filter their water for it to be safe enough to drink.&quot; </p><p>&#160;</p><p><a href="http&#58;//environment.nationalgeographic.com/environment/freshwater/change-the-course/water-footprint-calculator/">Water Footprint Calculator</a> Made by National Geographic. </p><p>An online, interactive resource that allows people to calculate much water they consume based on a variety of factors such as their home, diet and energy consumption.</p><p>&#160;</p><p><span style="text-decoration&#58;underline;"><strong>Global Context&#58;</strong></span></p><p><a href="http&#58;//thewaterproject.org/resources/download/TheWaterProject-TeachingGuide-MSHS.pdf">Lesson&#58; Village Voices</a> Pg. 24. Produced by The Water Project. </p><p>This is a simulation which gives youth an insight into solutions to water crises from various perspectives&#58; Geologist, Climatologist, Public Health Officer or Village Elder. </p><p>&#160;</p><p><a href="http&#58;//download.elca.org/ELCA%20Resource%20Repository/Water_and_Hunger.pdf?_ga=1.176839525.137310556.1433257944">Race to Development</a> Water &amp; Hunger Toolkit. ELCA World Hunger. </p><p>This activity is a simulation which informs youth about the difficulty to obtain water daily faced specifically by women. They will go through a variety of tasks listed on situation cards.</p><p><br> </p><p><a href="http&#58;//static.water.org/docs/curriculums/WaterOrg%20HighCurric15.pdfThis">Tragedy of the Water Commons</a> Produced by Water.org. </p><p>A lesson guide that introduces youth to The Tragedy of the Commons by using an interactive, visual representation. This resource also helps youth connect The Tragedy of the Commons to the global water crisis.</p><p><br></p><p><span style="text-decoration&#58;underline;"><strong>Creating and Building&#58;</strong></span></p><p><a href="http&#58;//water.epa.gov/learn/kids/drinkingwater/activity_grades_9-12_buildyourownwatershed.cfm">Build Your Own Watershed</a> Produced by U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. </p><p>This activity allows youth to learn about the importance and creation of watersheds while also discussing the pollution issue watersheds are facing. </p><p>&#160;</p><p><a href="http&#58;//static.water.org/docs/curriculums/WaterOrg%20HighCurric13.pdf">Mock Muck</a> Produced by Water.org. </p><p>In this activity, youth will attempt to purify dirty water using various techniques. </p><p>&#160;</p><p><a href="http&#58;//teachers.egfi-k12.org/lesson-way-to-flow-water-irrigation/">Way to Flow – Water Irrigation</a> Written by Jaimie Schock. Produced by TryEngineering. </p><p>Irrigation is a very crucial component of water issues around the world as it helps farmers sustain their livelihood. This activity gives youth the opportunity to learn about irrigation systems by designing and creating their own. </p><p>&#160;</p><p><span style="text-decoration&#58;underline;"><strong>Discussion and Advocacy&#58;</strong></span></p><p><a href="http&#58;//thewaterproject.org/resources/download/TheWaterProject-Water-Society-HS.pdf">Water and Society&#58; Day Two</a> Pg. 5. &#160;Produced by The Water Project.</p><p>This guide includes a game to introduce youth to what a commodity is and leads into a discussion/ debate about if water is a human right or a commodity. &#160;</p><p>&#160;</p><p><a href="http&#58;//download.elca.org/ELCA%20Resource%20Repository/Waters%20of%20the%20United%20States_Backgrounder.pdf?_ga=1.36755168.1771666077.1433451549">Waters of the United States&#58; Enforcing the Clean Water Act</a> Produced by ELCA Advocacy. Coupled with the resource- <a href="http&#58;//download.elca.org/ELCA%20Resource%20Repository/Writing_To_Congress.pdf?_ga=1.36755168.1771666077.1433451549">Writing to Public Officials</a> </p><p>These resources can be used to encourage youth to get involved with water-related advocacy. </p><p><br></p><p><span style="text-decoration&#58;underline;"><strong>Final Reflection Resources&#58;</strong></span></p><p><a href="https&#58;//d3n8a8pro7vhmx.cloudfront.net/polarisinstitute/pages/88/attachments/original/1420756456/CIV_Water_Perspectives_-_Conflict___Action_%28FULL%29.pdf?1420756456">Becoming Changemakers</a> Made by Polaris Institute. </p><p>This is a great resource to help youth generate ideas and examples of action that they can take with water crises. </p><p>&#160;</p><p><a href="http&#58;//download.elca.org/ELCA%20Resource%20Repository/Water_and_Hunger.pdf?_ga=1.176839525.137310556.1433257944">Closing and Action</a> section of Water Toolkit. </p><p>This can be a really helpful reference to give ideas for future involvement with water issues.</p><p><br></p><p><a href="https&#58;//salsa4.salsalabs.com/o/50750/images/Final%20Earth%20Day%202014%20CJM.pdf?key=73550321">Water, Holy Water</a> (Must fill out information before downloading). &#160;Produced by Creation Justice Ministries. &#160;</p><p>This resource has information about various topics surrounding water, but also gives ideas for creating a water themed worship service.</p><p>&#160;</p><p><em>Anna Smith is an ELCA World Hunger intern working with Hunger Education this summer. She is currently a student at Concordia College in Moorhead, Minn.</em></p></div>07/28/2015Reflections on the ELCA Youth GatheringRyan Cumming, Elysssa Salinas & Anna Smithhttp://elca.org/News-and-Events/blogs/ELCAWorldHunger/661http://elca.org/News-and-Events/blogs/ELCAWorldHunger/661<div class="ExternalClass6236C1DDCD94459CB304FEF112C218E6"><p style="text-decoration&#58;underline;">​<strong>MIVES in the D</strong></p><p><strong>Ryan P. Cumming</strong></p><p>I went to Detroit with 360 pool noodles, a three-seater latrine, a bag of tools, and a debriefing script, all to help make ELCA World Hunger's Walk for Water a meaningful experience for the youth and adults who passed through our space.&#160; The other items got used, but several times, the script was tossed aside as I listened to fellow Lutherans' stories of their own water challenges, especially from California – dry wells, dangerously low lakes, disappearing streams.&#160; I was happy to share with them the story of ELCA World Hunger.&#160; But in hearing their stories and learning about their concerns, I learned as much about the connections between faith, water and hunger as I had to offer them.&#160; Sometimes, we speak and sometimes, we listen.</p><p>Our work as a church is rooted in accompaniment, walking together with one another.&#160; The values which inform accompaniment are mutuality, inclusivity, vulnerability, empowerment and sustainability.&#160; We see ourselves as mutual partners creating inclusive tables where everyone involved feels safe enough to be vulnerable and guided in their own empowerment so we can shape long-lasting, sustainable relationships.&#160; This is not just a method but an expression of who we are in relationship to each other and to God.&#160; And it starts with listening.</p><p>In another series of conversations last week, this time with youth from Grace in Action in Southwest Detroit, I discovered that no matter how full our team packed boxes for the Gathering (and trust me, they were FULL), we could never bring enough to Detroit to match what the city and its people had to offer us.&#160; Listening to these young people, you can get a sense of what it means to be in the midst of crucifixion and resurrection.&#160; They have no illusions about the challenges their city faces.&#160; If they ever forget, the national media will remind them. &#160;But they also have a rich understanding of their own role in the renewal of Detroit.&#160; Much has been said of Detroit's recovery after the bankruptcy and leadership of their state-appointed emergency financial manager, but listening to young Detroiters, I found a clear sense that this resurrection did not begin top-down.&#160; It began on the streets and sidewalks, in alleys and garages with individuals and families refusing to believe that Detroit would remain always in its own Good Friday.</p><p>I was also reminded last week what it means to be church together.&#160; Sometimes, church looks like people standing and singing.&#160; Sometimes it looks like people praying together.&#160; Sometimes, church looks like a community working together to install a well for clean water.&#160; Sometimes, church looks like 30,000 young people painting, cleaning, and building.&#160; And sometimes church looks like young people from Southwest Detroit selling shirts they have designed with symbols of pride in their city, on a street corner near Cobo Center.</p><p>Those of us who traveled to Detroit – staff, partner organizations, volunteers, youth, leaders and so on – brought much to the city, and the media coverage of this massive event lifted up the hard work ELCA youth were part of in various neighborhoods.&#160; But in Cobo Center and in a cramped hotel room with young people from Southwest, I was reminded the importance of accompaniment, the importance of listening and looking not for the gospel we think we bring but for the gospel that is being lived out already, for the presence of God in communities.&#160; We brought a word of grace and hope – a &quot;gospel&quot; – to the city of Detroit, but not because the city was lacking in either.&#160; There is a gospel being lived in the Motor City, as sure as there is a gospel being lived in California, Cameroon, Indonesia, or wherever we find people expressing resurrection hope in the midst of crucifixion.&#160; We did not serve or teach or give or provide.&#160; We accompanied and were given the chance not to bring God to Detroit, or to bring the good news to those who hunger and thirst, but to bear witness to what God is already doing, to be part of the good news already at work among our God's chosen.&#160; It was clear – from the dynamic speakers, the structure of the event itself and more –&#160; that &quot;Rise Up Together&quot; was not a command we obeyed, nor a directive the ELCA proposed.&#160; It was an invitation to which we responded, to be part of what God is doing in Detroit.&#160; And we came away with more than we had to offer.</p><p><em>Ryan P. Cumming, Ph.D., is program director of hunger education for ELCA World Hunger.&#160; He can be reached at Ryan.Cumming@ELCA.org.</em> </p><p>&#160;</p><p style="text-decoration&#58;underline;"><strong>Worms, Diarrhea, and Malaria, Oh My!</strong></p><p><strong>Elyssa Salinas</strong></p><p>The 2015 ELCA Youth Gathering last week has been marked on my calendar since my first week working for the ELCA, but I still could not fathom the scope of this event. I was confused in meetings when we talked about noodle forests and jelly bean medicine; I had never been to a youth gathering, so I was not able to comprehend the scope of this event. <br></p><br> <p>The Walk for Water allowed participants to simulate the experience of many people around the world who do not have ready access to water. My base for the event ended up being in the clinic area of the track itself, which was about three-quarters of the way through the experience. The participants carried five-gallon jerry cans that weighed 41.5 pounds when full. On each of the jerry cans was a symbol telling them if they got a waterborne illness, such as malaria, diarrhea or worms. Then they would need to stop at the clinic to learn about their disease. </p><p style="text-align&#58;center;"><img src="http://search.elca.org/blogs/SiteAssets/Lists/ELCA%20World%20Hunger/Browse/clinic%201.jpg" alt="clinic 1.jpg" style="margin&#58;5px;width&#58;271px;" /><br></p><p>I worked in the worms (ascariasis) and diarrhea area where I talked about the causes and effects of these two water-related illnesses. The youth would sit on a latrine, if diagnosed with diarrhea, and try to spot the clean water from four different jars, if diagnosed with intestinal worms. </p><p style="text-align&#58;center;"><img src="http://search.elca.org/blogs/SiteAssets/Lists/ELCA%20World%20Hunger/Browse/Clinic%202.jpg" alt="Clinic 2.jpg" style="margin&#58;5px;width&#58;278px;" /><br></p><p>In the activity related to worms, there were two clear water jars and two that looked contaminated. When the youth or adult would pick the <em>clear</em> water jar as <em>clean</em> one, I would inform them that the water contained &#160;bacteria or a parasite that could make them sick. Instead, it was the orange-colored water that was safe to drink because it had been treated with an iodine solution. This demonstration made us all consider the reality of water across the world, and the serious risks contaminated water presents. </p><p style="text-align&#58;center;"><img src="http://search.elca.org/blogs/SiteAssets/Lists/ELCA%20World%20Hunger/Browse/Clinic%203.jpg" alt="Clinic 3.jpg" style="margin&#58;5px;width&#58;249px;" /><br></p><p>When participants saw a square drawn on their jerry cans, I would invite them to sit on the latrine because they had diarrhea! There was a lot of nervous laughing, especially from the youth, because here in the United States diarrhea is an illness associated with embarrassment but not death. The truth is that diarrhea is one of the leading causes of death in children five years and younger.<a href="/blogs/Lists/ELCA%20World%20Hunger/NewForm.aspx?Source=http%3a//search-admin.elca.org/blogs/Lists/ELCA%2520World%2520Hunger/Browse.aspx%23InplviewHash0c1eef9b-303a-45ca-8f67-7d206737f1cc%3D&amp;RootFolder=#_ftn1">[1]</a> This &quot;laughing matter&quot; kills 760,000 children every year.<a href="/blogs/Lists/ELCA%20World%20Hunger/NewForm.aspx?Source=http%3a//search-admin.elca.org/blogs/Lists/ELCA%2520World%2520Hunger/Browse.aspx%23InplviewHash0c1eef9b-303a-45ca-8f67-7d206737f1cc%3D&amp;RootFolder=#_ftn2">[2]</a> In order to help the participants gain perspective on this number, I compared it to the population of Detroit, which is fewer than 700,000 people.<a href="/blogs/Lists/ELCA%20World%20Hunger/NewForm.aspx?Source=http%3a//search-admin.elca.org/blogs/Lists/ELCA%2520World%2520Hunger/Browse.aspx%23InplviewHash0c1eef9b-303a-45ca-8f67-7d206737f1cc%3D&amp;RootFolder=#_ftn3">[3]</a> &#160;Mouths would open wide, gawking at the often-deadly reality of diarrheal diseases. Our work through partners and companions is not just about helping people get access to water, but also helping them access education and resources to prevent water-related diseases like worms and diarrhea. </p><p>In the middle of our space was a baptismal font fashioned out of wood crates and a metal bucket meant to be a sacred space to remind us of God's love. Yet after this week I believe that water is sacred, whether it stands in a font or comes home in jerry can. Water is always a sacred space. </p><p><em>Elyssa Salinas is program assistant of hunger education for ELCA World Hunger. She can be reached at Elyssa.Salinas@ELCA.org.</em></p><p>&#160;</p><p style="text-decoration&#58;underline;"><strong>We Must Continue to Rise Up Together</strong></p><p><strong>Anna Smith </strong></p><p>Growing up in the ELCA, I always wanted to attend the ELCA National Youth Gathering. When the time came in high school for me to attend, my congregation ultimately made the decision to forego the Youth Gathering in place of continuing with our annual mission trip. So you can imagine my excitement when I found out that I was selected to be the ELCA World Hunger Education Intern and that my &quot;duties&quot; included attending the 2015 ELCA Youth Gathering in Detroit. I was set to attend my first Youth Gathering as a twenty-year-old!</p><p>I took on the Youth Gathering in full force. I wanted to take it all in and not miss a thing. Although I spent most of my time at ELCA World Hunger's Walk for Water space, I was still able to attend the events at Ford Field almost every single night. I was also given the opportunity to speak to 500 youth from Northwest Wisconsin at my synod's &quot;Proclaim Story&quot; day. After much contemplation about what exactly I wanted the youth to take away from my story, I eventually decided to speak about the place where I have felt the closest to God&#58; Bible camp. My whole story centered on a quote from the former program director at the camp I worked at for three summers, Luther Point Bible Camp. Jesse Weiss would always remind the campers, &quot;God doesn't just live here at camp, God goes out with you.&quot; It is so easy to see God at work each and every day at camp, but that doesn't mean God isn't working just as hard outside of the camp world. I shared this sentiment because at an event like the Gathering, many youth experience a similar high point in their relationship with God. I wanted to share with them that it doesn't end here in Detroit.</p><p>I certainly witnessed a lot of moments of God at work in Detroit. While working the Walk for Water I was in awe as I watched incredibly athletic youth be humbled as they struggled to carry the 41.5 pound jerry can and realize that some people's lives are far more difficult than their own. I also saw some youth finish in tears after they could barely complete one lap, let alone go the full 37 laps to reach the average distance some women and girls must travel to collect water. Those tears and the deep empathy shown for our sisters and brothers around the world were certainly glimpses of God. </p><p>Then there was Ford Field. To witness 30,000 youth cheering at the top of their lungs at callsfor change and justice was simply breathtaking. As I heard the roar when my colleague Mikka McCracken &#160;said with confidence, &quot;I believe it is possible to end poverty and hunger,&quot; it was then that I knew this church and these youth WILL be a source of change and a beacon of justice.&#160;&#160;&#160; </p><p>After the Gathering in Detroit, we can't just return to life as usual. Those &quot;God sightings&quot; cannot fade to distant memories. The overall theme of the Gathering was Rise Up Together. We did this every day in Detroit by bearing burdens, building bridges, breaking chains and bringing hope. I call my fellow attendees to practice what we learned at the 2015 gathering&#58; that we find the issues that we are passionate about and that we never stop seeking God and continuing to do God's work. The Gathering's last day in Detroit was not the end; it was merely the beginning as we were sent to continue to Rise Up Together and never stop.</p><p><em>Anna Smith is an ELCA World Hunger intern working with Hunger Education this summer. She </em><em>is can be reached at Anna.Smith@ELCA.org</em></p><p><br><br></p><p><a href="/blogs/Lists/ELCA%20World%20Hunger/NewForm.aspx?Source=http%3a//search-admin.elca.org/blogs/Lists/ELCA%2520World%2520Hunger/Browse.aspx%23InplviewHash0c1eef9b-303a-45ca-8f67-7d206737f1cc%3D&amp;RootFolder=#_ftnref1">[1]</a> <em>World Health Organization&#58; Diarrhoeal Disease.</em> April 2013. http&#58;//www.who.int/mediacentre/factsheets/fs330/en/ (accessed July 23, 2015). </p><p><a href="/blogs/Lists/ELCA%20World%20Hunger/NewForm.aspx?Source=http%3a//search-admin.elca.org/blogs/Lists/ELCA%2520World%2520Hunger/Browse.aspx%23InplviewHash0c1eef9b-303a-45ca-8f67-7d206737f1cc%3D&amp;RootFolder=#_ftnref2">[2]</a> Ibid. </p><p><a href="/blogs/Lists/ELCA%20World%20Hunger/NewForm.aspx?Source=http%3a//search-admin.elca.org/blogs/Lists/ELCA%2520World%2520Hunger/Browse.aspx%23InplviewHash0c1eef9b-303a-45ca-8f67-7d206737f1cc%3D&amp;RootFolder=#_ftnref3">[3]</a> <em>United States Census&#58; Detroit (city), Michigan.</em> May 29, 2015. http&#58;//quickfacts.census.gov/qfd/states/26/2622000.html (accessed July 23, 2015).</p><p>&#160;</p></div>07/24/2015Charleston, SCOTUS and Hunger: What a Week!Ryan P. Cumminghttp://elca.org/News-and-Events/blogs/ELCAWorldHunger/659http://elca.org/News-and-Events/blogs/ELCAWorldHunger/659<div class="ExternalClass41AD5FFF9C6E43A18727B642A7A3DF4B"><p>Whew, what a week!&#160; Even for the time, the second week of August 1965 was a whirlwind.&#160; On August 6, President Lyndon Johnson signed the Voting Rights Act that protected suffrage for Americans of every race.&#160; The Act was the result of months of activism, including the actions in Selma and Montgomery, Alabama. &#160;&#160;But even the joy of the moment could not mask that trouble was brewing out west.&#160; A few days later, on August 11, riots erupted in the Watts neighborhood of Los Angeles. As Selma was celebrating, Watts was burning.</p><p>Fresh off success in the South, Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., headed to California and was shocked by what he witnessed.&#160; Many folks today are surprised to learn that King's reception in Watts was less than enthusiastic.&#160; When he spoke, he was greeted with jeers&#58; &quot;Get out of here Dr. King!&#160; We don't want you!&quot;&#160; As theologian James Cone has pointed out, not even the Jim Crow South could prepare King for the depth of economic and social racism of Watts.</p><p>The trip marked a turning point for King.&#160; His message shifted; he started talking less about segregation and more about economic opportunity.&#160; What did it matter if a lunch counter served both blacks and whites, if blacks couldn't afford to eat there?&#160; When he was assassinated, you might recall, he was in Memphis, Tenn., campaigning with striking sanitation workers for fair pay, the right to organize, and safer job conditions.&#160;<strong> King lived fighting racial injustice and died fighting economic injustice</strong>, learning in 1965, as his counterpart Malcolm X has pointed out before his death, just how closely the two were connected.</p><p>Whew, what a week!&#160; As we close in on the 50<sup>th</sup> anniversary of the Voting Rights Act and the Watts uprising, <a href="http&#58;//www.washingtonpost.com/news/morning-mix/wp/2015/06/29/six-predominately-black-southern-churches-burn-within-a-week-with-arson-suspected-in-at-least-three/">black churches are burning</a>, videos of racial violence are flooding the airwaves, and a Lutheran racist murdered nine African Americans as they studied the bible in church.&#160; The more things change, the more they stay the same.</p><p>And yet, the times have changed.&#160; Supporters of a racially inclusive vision of the country (<a href="http&#58;//download.elca.org/ELCA%20Resource%20Repository/RaceSS.pdf?_ga=1.90940441.202766406.1386002600">and that should be all of us, by the way</a>) eagerly anticipate the (official) removal of the Confederate flag from the South Carolina statehouse following the murders in Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston.&#160; Supporters of marriage equality celebrated the Supreme Court's decision to protect the right to marry in every state.</p><p>You've come a long way, baby.&#160; But, man, there's still a long way to go.</p><p>Removing a flag is an important step, but it's just a step.&#160; In another Supreme Court decision this past week, the justices upheld a key part of the Fair Housing Act of 1968 that allows advocates to bring claims of discrimination when the effects of a practice are discriminatory.&#160; What this means is that discrimination means much more than intent; when practices and policies disproportionately affect racial groups negatively, they are discriminatory.&#160; </p><p>This may help to address some of the more complex and challenging aspects of racism in the United States.&#160; </p><ul><li>Even when they had similar credit scores, people of color are <a href="http&#58;//www.epi.org/publication/webfeatures_snapshots_20080611/">more likely to receive subprime mortgages</a> with prepayment penalties than white borrowers.</li></ul><ul><li>Borrowers of color are also <a href="http&#58;//www.washingtonpost.com/news/storyline/wp/2014/12/23/if-youre-poor-your-mortgage-rate-can-depend-on-the-color-of-your-skin/">more likely to get turned down for mortgages</a> than white borrowers with similar credit scores.</li></ul><ul><li><a href="http&#58;//www.google.com/url?sa=t&amp;rct=j&amp;q=&amp;esrc=s&amp;source=web&amp;cd=3&amp;ved=0CDAQFjAC&amp;url=http&#58;//iasp.brandeis.edu/pdfs/Author/shapiro-thomas-m/racialwealthgapbrief.pdf&amp;ei=mtSSVarKKsGbgwT00ZnoDw&amp;usg=AFQjCNGX2QSx_QwrwCRIi5TDmM5ohMYtpw&amp;bvm=bv.96783405%2cbs.1%2cd.cWw&amp;cad=rja">The median net worth of white households is nearly 20 times that of black households, due largely to massive disparities in home ownership. </a>&#160;(For a very good explanation of how this came to be the case, see <a href="http&#58;//www.pbs.org/race/000_About/002_04-about-03.htm">here</a>.)</li></ul><ul><li>Young white men with felony convictions are <a href="http&#58;//ac360.blogs.cnn.com/2008/08/09/study-black-man-and-white-felon-same-chances-for-hire/">more likely to get called back</a> for job interviews than black men with no criminal history.</li></ul><ul><li>In 2013, more than 25% of <a href="http&#58;//www.feedingamerica.org/hunger-in-america/impact-of-hunger/african-american-hunger/african-american-hunger-fact-sheet.html">African American</a> households and 24 percent of <a href="http&#58;//www.feedingamerica.org/hunger-in-america/impact-of-hunger/latino-hunger/latino-hunger-fact-sheet.html">Latino</a> households were food insecure.&#160; By contrast, only 11 percent of white, non-Hispanic households were food insecure.</li></ul><p>Death-dealing racism wears many faces.&#160; Sometimes it looks like a white Lutheran (and, yes, we have to admit this) and sometimes it wears the more subtle but no less destructive mask of economic disenfranchisement and poverty.&#160; </p><p>The Supreme Court decision protecting rights to marriage will have far-reaching economic effects, protecting (for the first time, in many states) the right of spouses to receive much-needed Social Security benefits and protecting their right to shared assets if one spouse passes away.&#160; These are significant consequences that should be celebrated.&#160; But the decision leaves much work to be done.&#160; Gay and lesbian partners can now legally marry in all 50 states.&#160; They can also <a href="http&#58;//fortune.com/2015/06/26/gay-americans-can-marry-but-lack-workplace-protections/">legally be fired because of their sexual orientation</a> in 28 states.&#160; In more than half the states in the US, <a href="http&#58;//www.lgbtmap.org/equality-maps/non_discrimination_laws">you can legally be evicted or denied housing</a> if you are gay or lesbian.&#160; </p><p>The situation is even worse for transgender persons.&#160; Even fewer states offer workplace and housing protections for those who are transgender.&#160; An estimated <a href="http&#58;//www.google.com/url?sa=t&amp;rct=j&amp;q=&amp;esrc=s&amp;source=web&amp;cd=6&amp;ved=0CEkQFjAF&amp;url=http&#58;//www.nhchc.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/10/in-focus_transgender_sep2014_final.pdf&amp;ei=_PCSVe_mBMTdgwTL9oqoDg&amp;usg=AFQjCNFtxKhUZPenvriyhz1SXDEn8bSVNw&amp;bvm=bv.96783405%2cd.eXY&amp;cad=rja">20% of transgender persons have unstable housing or are at risk for homelessness</a>. When they do seek help from a shelter, <a href="http&#58;//www.thetaskforce.org/static_html/downloads/HomelessYouth.pdf">they are often discriminated against</a>, even at shelters that are open to diverse sexual orientations.&#160; Gender identity is still stigmatized – at home, in workplaces, in churches, in shelters, and on the streets, where many LGBTQ youth find themselves.</p><p>Race, sexual orientation and gender identity intersect with policies and practices at critical points, and hunger and poverty can often be the results.&#160; </p><p>On June 18, 2015, Presiding Bishop Elizabeth Eaton issued a call to a day of repentance and mourning in the wake of the Charleston church murders.&#160; After this day, she wrote, &quot;then we need to get to work.&quot;&#160; She urged ELCA Lutherans to be involved&#58; &quot;We need to talk and we need to listen, but we also need to act.&quot;&#160; </p><p>We do all of this with hope in the resurrected God and awareness of the crucified Christ.&#160; Lowering a flag does not enliven a dead body.&#160; Ensuring the right to marry for all people does not protect the rights to employment, housing or public accommodations for everyone.&#160; We live in the tension of the reign of God that is &quot;already&quot; here but &quot;not yet&quot; here fully.&#160; Too often, we get an appetizer of the &quot;already&quot; and gorge ourselves on the &quot;not yet.&quot;</p><p>This isn't about building a perfect world.&#160; As Lutherans, we know that the fullness of God's reign is God's doing.&#160; Nor is this about saving ourselves, as if our works can make us or our world righteous apart from God. </p><p><strong>It is not works-righteousness to strive for justice and peace in the world.</strong><strong>&#160; </strong><strong>It is works-righteousness to sit back contented and believe we have done enough.</strong>&#160; Striving for justice and peace in all the world is part of our baptismal calling.&#160; Believing we have striven enough, that lowering a flag or protecting one set of rights has cleared us from addressing the deeper, more entrenched symptoms of sin, is works-righteousness and threatens to undermine our baptismal vocation.&#160; God invites us into God's work of building a community of justice and peace here, now.&#160; God is already in the process of inaugurating God's perfect reign.&#160; We have been called to be workers in the vineyard.</p><p>There is some to celebrate, there is much to mourn and there is much to do. Addressing the root causes of hunger, a commitment our church has made through ELCA World Hunger, demands the kind of honesty Bishop Eaton asks of us.&#160; Despite where we land on various spectrums of politics and faith, we are all invited to share in God's work of crafting a world in which &quot;justice roll[s] down like waters and righteousness like an ever-flowing stream&quot; (Amos 5&#58;24).&#160; </p><p>Regardless of which way we might answer the latest, greatest CNN/Fox News/NBC/Whatever-you-like-media poll, we can at least unite around this as a confession of faith in the Gracious Creator&#58; no one should go hungry in a world of God's abundance.&#160; As our namesake, Martin Luther, once wrote, &quot;<strong>we are bound to each other in such a way that no one may forsake the other in his distress but is obliged to assist and help him as he himself would like to be helped</strong>&quot; (<em>Whether One May Flee from a Deadly Plague</em>, 1527).</p><p>We do this work not because we can make our world perfect, nor because we are compelled to obey a demanding God.&#160; We enter into the hard work of eradicating hunger because we seek God.&#160; And when there is suffering – from the direct violence of a shooter or the indirect violence of discriminatory economic practices – I can't help but recall the response to an execution in Elie Wiesel's <em>Night</em>&#58;&#160; &quot;Where is God?&#160; He is there, hanging from the gallows.&quot;&#160; We find God on the cross at Calvary, and we find God on the cross today, with those who have been excluded, marginalized and victimized.&#160; To fight hunger – authentically, Lutheran-ly – is to feed others and be fed ourselves, by the presence of God among our neighbors.</p><p><strong>What Can We Do?</strong></p><p>So what do we, as people of God called to anti-hunger ministries do, practically?&#160; There will be other suggestions (and I hope they are shared widely), but one step is to listen, as Bishop Eaton urges us.&#160; Start a listening campaign in your hunger ministry.&#160; If you are unsettled by the racism in Charleston, <strong>start listening </strong>for subtle and overt signs of racism in your ministry.&#160; More than that, listen for ways that your hunger ministry can be anti-racist and part of the broader solution.&#160; (For a great article on this, see <a href="http&#58;//onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1467-8330.2006.00582.x/abstract">Rachel Slocum's article, &quot;Anti-racist Practice and the Work of Community Food Organizations.&quot;</a>&#160; If you don't have a license, the article is still worth the purchase price.&#160; Or ask a college student to look it up on a library database.)</p><p><strong>Ask the right questions to the right people</strong>, too.&#160; Many ELCA members are unsupportive of the protection of marriage for all people, yet profess love for LGBTQ neighbors. How is this exemplified in our other ministries?&#160; For those who do support marriage equality, what other ways are you allying with the LGBTQ communities to address economic and social inequity? <strong>We may be one church under a big tent, but it is a tent in which ALL ought to be fed.</strong><br></p><p>Here are some other questions to ask&#58;</p><ul><li>Are our <strong>relief</strong> ministries welcoming and inclusive?&#160; </li><li>Do my congregation's or synod's hunger <strong>education</strong> programs include education about the intersections of hunger and racism, sexism and heterosexism?&#160; </li><li>Are our <strong>sustainable development</strong> programs – tutoring, job placement and assistance, community gardens, etc. – affirming of persons from diverse backgrounds?&#160; </li><li>Does my <strong>advocacy</strong> include demands for protection of rights to employment, housing and public services for all people, regardless of race, gender identity, sexual orientation and ethnicity?</li><li>In our <strong>community organizing</strong>, are we listening to and affirming voices that have been often marginalized and silenced in our communities?<br></li><li>Is our ministry's <strong>leadership</strong> diverse?&#160; Is there intentional space for a variety of voices to be heard?</li><li>Are our <strong>communications</strong> not only sensitive to but <em>affirming</em> of diverse identities?</li></ul><p>ELCA World Hunger – from the team at the Churchwide organization to the local pantry in a congregation – can be part of the work God is inviting us into by listening and being open to what we hear.&#160; The challenges can seem so large, the issues so complex, but anti-hunger ministry is already an entrypoint to doing our part in God's work of reconciliation and renewal.&#160; I hope that we, as a Church <a href="http&#58;//download.elca.org/ELCA%20Resource%20Repository/Church_SocietySS.pdf?_ga=1.24265401.202766406.1386002600">&quot;gathered and shaped by the Holy Spirit to be a serving and liberating presence in the world,&quot;</a> take advantage of the opportunity we have to be the community we are called to be.&#160; </p><p>Maybe this is where we begin as ELCA World Hunger, with a season of listening for ways our Church's hunger ministries can be enriched by addressing discriminatory practices and policies not as &quot;race problems&quot; or &quot;sex problems&quot; but as what they are – root causes of hunger that create scarcity when there is abundance and exclusion when there is more than enough room at the table.</p><p>&#160;</p><p style="text-align&#58;center;"><em>&quot;Each of us and all of us need to examine ourselves, our church and our communities. We</em></p><p style="text-align&#58;center;"><em>need to be honest about the reality of racism within us and around us. We need to talk and we</em></p><p style="text-align&#58;center;"><em>need to listen, but we also need to act. No stereotype or racial slur is justified. Speak out against</em></p><p style="text-align&#58;center;"><em>inequity. Look with newly opened eyes at the many subtle and overt ways that we and our</em></p><p style="text-align&#58;center;"><em>communities see people of color as being of less worth. Above all pray – for insight, for</em></p><p style="text-align&#58;center;"><em>forgiveness, for courage. </em><em>&#160;</em><em>Kyrie Eleison.&quot; – <a href="http&#58;//www.elca.org/News-and-Events/7756">Presiding Bishop Elizabeth Eaton</a></em></p><p>&#160;</p><p><em>Ryan P. Cumming, Ph.D., is program director of hunger education for ELCA World Hunger.</em><em>&#160; </em><em>He can be reached at Ryan.Cumming@ELCA.org.</em></p></div>07/02/2015Humanity and hungerAnna Smithhttp://elca.org/News-and-Events/blogs/ELCAWorldHunger/658http://elca.org/News-and-Events/blogs/ELCAWorldHunger/658<div class="ExternalClassA7F7353CC6F44632B8B8A2EF64A13816"><span><p><em>If you see some brother or sister in need and have the means to do something about it but turn a cold shoulder and do nothing, what happens to God's love? It disappears. And you made it disappear. - 1 John 3&#58;17 (The Message)</em></p><p>This past week, I was able to head to Wrigleyville, a Chicago neighborhood, to witness the Chicago Blackhawks' Stanley Cup victory celebration. Throughout the night I observed a great number of unsettling scenes unfolding. One in particular that deserves reflection occurred on the way home via public transit. I was transferring trains and walked through a tunnel among the sea of boisterous fans. Up ahead, someone caught my eye. There was a man sitting on the side of the tunnel. As I moved closer, I noticed he had signs made of cardboard. The two I remember said&#58;&#160; &quot;$1.00 for my daughter to eat,&quot; and &quot;$1.00 for the Blackhawks.&quot; The man was sitting there, holding a cup and staring at the wall across from him. My attention was quickly drawn away from him by the several fans shouting, &quot;GO HAWKS!&quot; I saw that every one of these people were walking straight by this man without sparing a dollar or even acknowledging that he was there. In particular what resonated with me about witnessing this occurrence is that most of us had probably spent dozens of dollars already that night on food, drinks and victory merchandise. Admittedly, I, too, fell victim to the pressure of my surroundings and continued to walk by this man just like everyone else. I spent the rest of my train ride home attempting to process what I saw and how I am called to respond as a Christian.</p><p>As I reflect on this, what first comes to mind is a late-night discussion I had while studying abroad in India last fall. We were discussing the practice of untouchability, an attitude based on the belief that certain people are &quot;impure&quot; that translates into a variety of behaviors, norms and physical acts. People in the Dalit community, with whom I spent my time, are most often considered &quot;untouchable.&quot;</p><p>During that discussion someone posed the question, &quot;Does untouchability happen in the United States?&quot; After a brief moment, we listed several examples, such as avoiding the &quot;bad part&quot; of town and sidestepping people who appear to be homeless. </p><p>What I witnessed that night – and, frankly, more often than not when I see people facing hunger on the street –&#160; looks a lot like untouchability. There is a sense that the person on the side of the road is unclean, unsafe or unworthy of our attention.<br></p><p>The Bible proclaims that we are ALL created in God's own image. As Paul writes in his letter to the Romans, &quot;So in Christ, we, though many, form one body, and each member belongs to all the others.&quot;&#160;As Christ commands, &quot;Love your neighbor as yourself.&quot; As Martin Luther wrote in &quot;Freedom of a Christian,&quot; &quot;Therefore, we should be guided in all our works by this one thought alone – that we may serve and benefit others in everything that is done, having nothing before our eyes except the need and advantage of the neighbor.&quot; And we as Lutherans speak of the model of accompaniment, or walking in solidarity with and among our brothers and sisters of all walks of life. How do we practice this outside of our church walls or away from planned mission trips or service events? What does it mean for us to recognize each person – <em>every</em> person – as the very image of God?</p><p>Reflecting on that experience on my way home, I wish I wouldn't have followed the crowd. This wasn't a matter of not giving a dollar, but rather the inner feeling that I, too, had ignored the humanity of the man with the signs. What would it look like for us to go from ignoring&#160;the person, to&#160;offhand giving and finally, beyond this, to really seeing the image of God in our brothers and sisters? How does our choice to give or not to give reflect our belief that God has created us in God's image and marked us as God's own? Maybe that means giving a dollar, or maybe it means asking a person his name or listening to her story. Maybe it means recognizing even those whom society deems &quot;untouchable&quot; as people worth knowing, worth listening to and worth seeing.</p><p><br></p><p><em>Anna Smith is an ELCA World Hunger intern working with Hunger Education this summer. She is currently a student at Concordia College in Moorhead, Minn.</em></p></span></div>06/24/2015