7 June 2010 Some 150,000 people took to the streets in 70 countries yesterday to raise awareness and support for the efforts of the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) to fight global hunger during the eighth annual ‘End Hunger: Walk the World’ event.
At least 153 walks took place in locales ranging from Rome’s Piazza del Popolo to the ancient city of Jerash in Jordan, the Sri Lankan beachside town of Negombo to Indonesia’s capital Jakarta, and from the rural town of Mulanje in Malawi to Manhattan’s Battery Park.
The event is sponsored by three of WFP’s global private sector partners – global mail service TNT, consumer goods company Unilever, and nutrition and life-science specialists DSM.
Iraq witnessed its first ‘Walk the World’ event, which was held in the town of Erbil in the Kurdistan Region to highlight the risk of hunger for schoolchildren there.
The biggest walk took place in Burkina Faso, where some 20,000 participants gathered in the capital, Ouagadougou, under the patronage of First Lady Chantal Compaore.
The smallest walk took place in New Zealand, where one TNT employee braved stormy weather on his own to support the fight against hunger.
According to the Rome-based agency, all of the global walks raised enough money to provide meals for 10,000 schoolchildren for a whole year.
“In an incredible wave of solidarity, the world came forward to say that child hunger is totally unacceptable,” said WFP Executive Director Josette Sheeran.
Supporters can still join in the walk through the online community at wfp.org/walktheworld.
News Tracker: past stories on this issue