Liberia Improves Marginally in Global Hunger Index

MONROVIA, Montserrado – Welthungerhilfe and its partners have released the 2018 Global Hunger Index, reporting that Liberia made progress by reducing its hunger severity rate from a classification of “alarming” to “serious.”

The report also showed that Liberia moved upward by four positions. In 2017, Liberia was among eight countries that suffered from “alarming” hunger levels, ranking 112th out of 119 countries. However, the country now sits at the 108th position out of 119 countries.

According to Welthungerhilfe’s press release, even though this year’s result sounds good compared to last year’s, Liberia needs to make more gains as there were significant disparities in food insecurity throughout Liberia, with some disparities in malnutrition prevalence as well.

The organization said it is responding to this need by supporting individual farmers, vulnerable households, and communities in Bomi, Grand Cape Mount, and Montserrado. Welthungerhilfe also said it was responding in southeastern counties such as Grand Gedeh, River Cess, Grand Kru, Sinoe, and River Gee through activities to promote vegetable production and consumption, backyard gardening, nutrition awareness, village savings and loan associations, and hygiene promotion in schools and communities.

The Global Hunger Index is designed to measure and track global hunger levels. It is released once every year to provide a means of comparing the levels of hunger between countries and regions. It draws attention to the areas of the world in greatest need of additional resources to eliminate hunger.

Countries scores are calculated based on a formula that captures three dimensions of hunger – insufficient caloric intake, child undernutrition, and child mortality. Indicators such as undernourishment, child wasting, child stunting, and child mortality are also considered.

Welthungerhilfe CEO Mathias Mogge said approximately 124 million people suffer from acute hunger, a striking increase from 80 million two years ago.

“About 151 million children are stunted, and 51 million children are wasted across the globe,” Mogge added.

He said hard-won gains are being further threatened by conflict, climate change, poor governance, and a host of other challenges.

“Despite evidence showing that real progress is possible, the root causes and complex realities of hunger are not being adequately tackled.”

Featured photo by Gbatemah Senah

Gbatemah Senah

Gbatemah is a graduate of the University of Liberia and a recipient of the Jonathan P. Hicks Scholarship for Mass Communications. In 2017, Senah won three Press Union of Liberia awards: Women's Rights Reporter of the Year, Legislative Reporter of the Year, and Land Rights Reporter of the Year. In 2018, he was also recognized as the Land Rights Reporter of the Year.

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