Africa (MNN) — The pandemic intensified global hunger last year, especially in Africa. According to a new report from the Africa Center, an academic institution within the U.S. Department of Defense established and funded by Congress, food insecurity rose by 60-percent in 2020.
Existing factors like conflict and governmental failure already made food hard to find in many African nations. Then, COVID-19 restrictions cut supply chains and increased food prices.
“The effect is significant across the board anywhere there are poor people [because] poor people are spending a greater portion of their income on food,” AMG International President Tasos Ioannides explains.
When most of a paycheck goes toward purchasing food, there’s not enough left to buy other essentials.
“The people who are disproportionately affected are the poorer people, especially in places where they are depending [on] a day’s wages to survive,” Ioannides reiterates.
A partnering church in Kenya recently sent this update to AMG headquarters:
COVID-19 brought on many hardships to our area of ministry. With a drastic decrease in weekly income for our pastors, many families were forced to leave the towns and cities they were ministering in to move back to more affordable and rural housing. Our churches have fallen under quite substantial hardships during the pandemic. Many congregations have lost the ability to support their pastors, forcing these ministers to find unique ways to make ends meet. For example, some pastors started a taxi business with their motorcycles, usually used to spread the Gospel in rural villages to make enough to put food on the table.
With the support of resource partners, AMG International is helping poor children and families in Kenya, Uganda, Ghana, Liberia, Zimbabwe, and South Africa. Local church partners distribute relief packs with food and more. See what goes into each COVID-19 relief kit.
“It helps to strengthen the local Christian presence in communities and illustrate how the body of Christ can come together to help people who are in need,” Ioannides says.
“When we help people it is an outreach of the love of Jesus. That’s what Jesus did when He was on this earth.”
Header image is a representative stock photo courtesy of Omotayo Tajudeen/Pexels.