Nearly 1,000 Christian radios across the United States joined Compassion International to raise awareness about the global food crisis on Wednesday.
As part of Global Food Crisis Awareness Day on March 11, child sponsorship ministry Compassion International and radio partners want people to know that the economic crisis has not only devastated the stock and job market, but also the ability for the world's poor to obtain food.
"Average food prices around the world between 2006 and 2008 have risen at staggering levels," said Mark Hanlon, senior vice president for Compassion International-USA, in a statement.
"Rice during this time rose by 217 percent, wheat by 136 percent, maize by 125 percent and soybeans by 107 percent," he pointed out. "While most of us here in America will commit to cutting coupons to offset costs, the poor will cut meals. These increases mean more than a tightening of the belt. It can literally affect their very survival."
The U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) has reported that more than 30 counties are in the midst of a food crisis, according to Reuters.
"I have been fighting poverty for more than 30 years," said Wess Stafford, president and CEO of Compassion International. "Throughout that time I have never seen the potential for devastation that I see in the current Global Food Crisis."
WAWZ Star 99.1 program director and morning show host Johnny Stone said, "I am so excited that STAR 99.1 is part of eliminating the face of hunger in the world. Nothing of this magnitude has ever been done before."
The radio station covers the New York City and New Jersey market.
Compassion is the world's largest one-to-one child sponsorship organization. It works in 25 of the world's poorest countries through 4,800 local churches to address global poverty while also providing spiritual support. Since 1952, Compassion has served more than 1 million children.