‘The Theological Basis for Addressing Poverty and Hunger’

[Wednesday, September 25 - 11:30 am | WEsley Chapel]

Calenthia Dowdy, Ph.D, Eastern University

‘Global Poverty and Hunger: A Call to Action’

[Friday, September 27 - 11:30 am]

Eugene Cho, One Day’s Wages & Quest Church


Session Title: 'Poverty and Hunger in Our Community'

[Thursday, September 26 - 12:00 pm | Dining Hall South End]


Coffee House

Session Title: ‘Engaging The Arts’

[Thursday, September 26 --- 7 - 9:00 pm | Van Dyk Lounge]

Tracy Howe Wispelwey, Restoration Village Arts


[Friday, September 27 - 1:45 & 3:00 pm]

*Note: All workshops sessions will take place during both times.

Session Title: A Circle of Protection Around the Most Vulnerable--Children

Chiho Suzuki, UNICEF
LIB 323

UNICEF is committed to social protection as part of its global mandate to advocate for the realization of children’s rights.  Within UNICEF’s equity focused approach to development, social protection is a crucial policy tool for achieving equity and social justice.  UNICEF draws on multi-sector approach and coordination to maximize linkages between social protection and sector outcomes, including nutrition as part of a broader health outcome.  The speaker will present UNICEF’s key principles and contributions at the global, regional and country-levels to support well-functioning social protection systems that contribute to supporting vulnerable households, build resilience to external shocks, and building an environment conducive to a healthy and balanced development for young children.

Session Title: ‘GMOs and Food Aid--Effective Solutions to Food Insecurity?’

Norbert Wilson, PhD., Auburn University
CHC 327

Limited access to food (food insecurity) is a vulnerability that low-income households around the world face.  Food insecurity may be the product of limited access to markets to generate income or purchase food.  Systemic or idiosyncratic shocks such as rising food prices, war, drought, loss of a wage earner, etc. can trigger, perpetuate or exacerbate food insecurity. Scientists offer genetically modified crops as a way to help alleviate the harm of crop failures and suggest that these technologies can lower costs which may translate into lower prices and greater profitability. Food aid, often linked to GMOs, has also been viewed as a solution for addressing food insecurity.  This workshop will explore these “Hot Button” issues.

Session Title: ‘Rural Community-Based Livelihoods: Lessons from Remote Villages in Kisii, Kenya’

Jackie Ogega, Catholic Relief Services
CHC 329

Although rural community-based livelihood initiatives promote the social and economic well being of women and families, their contributions to reducing poverty and ensuring food security have seldom been recognized. This session explores two examples of Mpanzi’s ( community-based livelihoods innovations in remote rural villages of Kisii in Southwestern Kenya.  These programs integrate traditional cooperative approaches with modern education and training to promote food security and sustainable development that assures the agency of local people. Both the Obogima—a term used to mean “the centrality of life”—and the Family Hui innovations that will be discussed use indigenous values, family-centered systems and faith-based networks of rural women to bring positive change to their own communities. Some of the challenges and opportunities of implementing these innovative approaches will be discussed in this workshop.

Session Title: ‘Telling the Story—Effective Communication for Policy Change’

Todd Post, Bread for the World
CHC 330

We often discuss poverty and hunger using statistics.  The millions of men, women and children who are impacted by hunger are not just numbers--they are people.  This workshop will seek to engage participants in the many ways we can ensure that poverty and hunger have a human face.  There is a story behind each person who is affected and how to tell it, is critical in understanding how to solve the problem.  You will leave this session with a better appreciation of research based communication and education approaches that help in framing effective programs and policies.

Session Title: ‘Immigration Reform and the Rural "Poor"’

Gonzalo Martinez de Vedia, Worker Justice Center
CHC 224

As efforts mount in Washington to reform a broken federal immigration system, tens of thousands of immigrant farmworkers who visit New York State every year stand to be directly affected. This workshop will consider the potential impact of each of the current legislative proposals as they aim to address the disparity between the labor our multibillion-dollar state agricultural industry demands and the legal venues our federal immigration system has failed to supply for workers to reach those jobs with the proper documentation. This analysis will be grounded in an overview of (1) how the current guestworker programs have, and have not, been applied to satisfy the need for manual labor in our region's vineyards, greenhouses, landscaping businesses as well as apple, cherry, cabbage, and dairy farms; (2) how the lack of documentation limits the access of this population to our societal resources, including access to healthy food options; and (3) how US foreign policy dating back to the signing of NAFTA has positioned
Mexican and Central American workers at the intersection of these evolving immigration and farm labor systems.

Additional Resources and Recent Media Coverage:

Session Title: ‘Art and Advocacy’

Tracy Howe Wispelwey, Restoration Village Arts
CFA 231

Music and art at the very least can carry compelling messages of change and hope.  Might they also be the fruit of and catalyst for justice in the world?  In this workshop we will explore several examples of music and art within movements of justice and faith.  We will explore Biblical foundations of art and justice work.  We will sing some songs and maybe write some together.  Participants will also spend time reflecting on issues they care about and how their own creative expression might be the very means to engage injustice in the world.  People of all backgrounds are welcomed, whether you are a seasoned songwriter and artist, or simply want to explore the world of artistic advocacy.


‘Hunger 101-- Exploring the Basics, Finding our Roots, Acting in Faith’

[Friday, September 27 --- 8:30 - 11:00am | Dining Hall South End]

Hunger is a persistent and sobering reality in our nation and world.  Many misperceptions surround hunger and poverty and the people who struggle to have adequate food every day.  But there is real hope that by working together we can end hunger. Join us for an informative and engaging session where we’ll grapple with key facts about the complexities of hunger and its underlying causes.  We will reflect on the biblical basis by which each of us is called to respond hunger in our time and on the important role that advocacy plays in that response and explore specific approaches to effectively speak out about hunger to our nation’s leaders.  Learn how you can take action today to make a difference for hungry people.  This session is led by Bread for the World staff Larry Hollar, Todd Post, Krisanne Vaillancourt Murphy and Derek Schwabe and assisted by Houghton College students.