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Save the Children: Hunger crisis major problem facing kids globally

Children in a street in Damba community, Zamfara

Save the Children International (SCI) says hunger is the major problem confronting kids across the world.

In a recent report, the organisation highlighted ten issues affecting children, from a survey conducted in 13 countries including Nigeria.

The organisation named poverty, climate change, violence against children and hunger, among other issues.

The report said 45 percent of adults surveyed in 13 countries believe hunger is the issue affecting children the most in their country and globally.

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“The survey of more than 25,000 adults between September and October was the largest global audience insights study of its kind for the aid agency, and reflects the urgency of the hunger crisis that has been sweeping across the world due to a combination of the climate crisis, conflict, and economic fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic,” the report said.

“Save the Children conducted the survey in a range of high-, middle- and low-income countries, such as Canada, Egypt, Germany, Indonesia, Italy, Mexico, Nigeria, Norway, South Africa, Spain, the United Kingdom and the United States.

“Survey participants could choose up to three options from a list of 10 issues affecting children. ‘Poverty’ emerged a close second to hunger at 40% of respondents identifying it as a primary concern they have for children, followed by ‘violence towards children’ at about 39%.

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“In contrast, ‘climate change’ and ‘emergencies and natural disasters’ received the least number of votes, at about 14% and 10% respectively.

“When children are directly asked about the issues affecting them, climate change takes centre stage.

“Last year, Save the Children found that 83% of children in 15 countries reported witnessing climate change or inequality, or both, affecting the world around them.”

The report said before the war between Hamas and Isreal in October, conflict and war were among the top responses from 20 percent of people on issues affecting children.

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The report said aggressive weather patterns pushed about 27 million children into hunger in 2022.

“Conflicts, economic instability, and repeated climate shocks have fueled a devastating hunger crisis around the world, with an average of 33 children born into hunger every minute in 2023,” the report added.

Commenting on the report, Alexandra Saieh, head of humanitarian advocacy and policy of the organisation, called on world leaders to tackle hunger and nutrition crisis by ending global conflict and climate change impact.

“It is abundantly clear that hunger is a concern for children worldwide. These findings underscore the need for immediate action and collective efforts to address the global hunger crisis and improve the well-being of children everywhere,” Saieh said.

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“It is vital we not only address the immediate needs of the global hunger crisis but also tackle the root causes, including conflict, poverty, and climate change. We’re seeing hunger used as a method of warfare in many contexts.

“This is a global crisis and requires a global solution. Without this, hunger will continue to destroy dreams and eat away at childhoods everywhere.”

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