Thursday, August 11, 2011

For granted Food

10 more minutes. 7 more minutes.  5 more minutes. 3 more minutes. 30 seconds. And yes! It's finally time to break my fast. Within the next 15 minutes, I have eaten to my stomach's content, maybe even a little more than I should have. I then go relax on the couch with a big glass of water. This whole process is then repeated the next day, and the day after, until the month of Ramadan is over.

Everyday I have so many choices of foods to choose from. I can literally eat whatever I desire to eat. I was thinking about this today and I realized that I take my food for granted. The plate of food I have in front of me may just be another dinner for me, but it could be heaven for a child in Somalia.

About 3.7 million people are struck with famine in Somalia, according to an article in the New York Times. That's nearly half of Somalia's population! So what exactly is a famine? The United Nations determines a country is struck by famine when "acute malnutrition rates among children exceed 30 percent, more than two people per 10,000 die per day and people are not able to access food and other basic necessities."

Many are fleeing the country, crossing the border over to Kenya and Ethiopia. But by the time mothers reach the borders with their children on their backs, it is too late to save the lives of the children. The New York Times article, which you can read here), states that refugee camps along the border are full of babies taking their last breaths.

A mother taking her children to camp at the Ethiopia-Somalia border. Source:
It's kinda crazy how this world works. Here's one country, like the States, that according to a study done by the Environmental Protection Agency, wastes about 30 million tons of food every year. Let's say you go to McDonald's and order a milkshake. If they don't manage to swirl the whipped cream perfectly on top of that milkshake, without thinking they toss it in the trash and make you another one. Then there's another country, like Somalia, that could've used that one milkshake to feed one whole family. How is it possible to have such two extremes exist in one world?

I fast for a little over 15 hours everyday without food and water this month. By the time there's about two hours left to break my fast, I am starving. I don't have the energy or will to do anything, not even shop (and I always have energy for that!). All I can think about is what I will be breaking my fast with. And this is my condition after I woke up early morning and had a big breakfast that was supposed to last me the whole day.

The people in Somalia don't have food or water. They don't have the privilege of having a nice big breakfast in the morning. On top of all that, they have to walk for miles and miles in the heat with their children on their shoulders to seek refuge and aid. Even then they don't know for sure whether the camp will have enough food for their children or even if their children will the survive the journey.

Take one moment and put yourself in their shoes. We take the food on our plate so for granted. How lucky are we to be able to look forward to a meal everyday?

Just another thought,

If you would like to help the people of Somalia in this crisis, please visit the Helping Hand web site here and make a donation! There is no minimum or maximum amount you can give. Just give whatever you are capable of giving. Any amount, big or small, will help towards saving more lives.


  1. subhanallah,i read all of this post just feeling so upset for these people.thats so true,we should all make dua!

  2. I wrote something so similar to this in my journal this morning after suhoor. My thoughts are with you on this subject! I hope everyone at least makes an effort to aid Somalia, and if they can't, then make duaa for them.

  3. Great post. We really need to spread the awareness to all our friends about all the poor children and adults who do not a great big bowl of fruit chaat and dinner awaiting them at home. This is what Ramadan is all about! Pray for the poor!

  4. thats so true! thanks for the comments/thoughts! ;)

    -naz and hera

  5. So true. It makes me so sad when left over food is thrown away in my house because its been sitting in the fridge for so long and has gone bad. We def need to spread more awareness about the starving people in Somalia.

  6. So sad. And these people need more than food. Once the famine is over, they need access to health care, birth control, and a way to grow their own sustainable food. But in a war torn country, none of those are really possible. It's odd to think we have all of this, we even expect it. And they don't have any of it.


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You seemed to have stumbled upon our blog.

We're Hera and Naz. Both of us are full time biology majors at the lovely University of Southern Indiana. When we're not out doing nerdy school stuff, we enjoy shopping, drinking slushies, and of course, writing on this awesome blog.

'What Makes the World Go Round' was started in August of 2011 to be a catch-all for our thoughts. We try and update as much as we can, depending on how hectic our lives. So bear with us. :) Please feel free to browse (by clicking on the cloud tabs above), comment and/or subscribe. We love hearing what you have to say!

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