Online food auction helps UN agency provide meals to world’s hungry

Community food blogger Pim Techamuanvivit

19 December 2006 – A global community of Internet users and culinary devotees has raised almost $31,000 in little more than a week to help the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) provide meals to some of the hungriest and poorest people.

Three years ago, Pim Techamuanvivit, a renowned United States blogger on restaurants, devised the “Menu for Hope” auction programme where foodies around the world can buy $10 tickets to bid on items ranging from complimentary meals at top restaurants to rare cookery books to baskets of unusual gastronomic items.

All proceeds from the auction – which is located at http://chezpim.typepad.com – are being given to the WFP.

This year’s target of $25,000 has already been exceeded, with the total reaching $30,986.70 as of 4.15 pm New York time today. Menu for Hope, which began on 10 December, is scheduled to keep running through Friday. Last year the project raised $17,000 to help the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF).

Ms. Techamuanvivit said one of the key reasons for the success this year has been that so many donors value the work of the WFP.

“The opportunity to help the world’s hungry galvanizes this community of people who share a passion for food,” she said. “Here is a chance to make a difference, to share some of the privileges we enjoy – that’s why so many people have so generously and enthusiastically shown their support.”

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