The Hunger Project offers programs throughout Africa, South Asia, and Latin America. Our programs are based on an innovative, holistic approach, which empowers women and men living in rural villages to become the agents of their own development and make sustainable progress in overcoming hunger and poverty. This differs from a classic top down model, which many organizations adopt.
While adapted to meet local challenges and opportunities wherever we work, all our programs have at their foundation three essential pillars:
Start by empowering women as key change agents
The Hunger Project believes in empowering women as key change agents. An essential part of ending hunger must be to cause society-wide change towards gender equality. Women bear the major responsibility for meeting basic needs, yet are systematically denied the resources, freedom of action and voice in decision-making to fulfill that responsibility. This first pillar is a critical component of the Hunger Project's work.
Mobilizing entire communities into self-reliant action
The Hunger Project believes that through mobilizing people, people can take action to improve their own communities. The Hunger Project does not enter an area of the world and declare to have answers to all of the problems of its people. The process is quite the opposite in fact. For a community to really truly become self-sustaining, and end their own hunger, they must have the opportunity to take the steps necessary to see that through to fruition.
Fostering effective partnerships to engage local government
The Hunger Project also focuses on forging partnerships with local governments. Before meeting any citizens, The Hunger Project negotiates an agreement with the governing bodies in the region. Oftentimes the thing standing in the way is the government itself. The Hunger Project will not begin work in an area where the support of the government cannot be obtained. If we did, we would be setting the people up to fail.
Bottom Up Model of Development
The Hunger Project embraces a community-led development (bottom up model of development), empowering people to become agents of change in their own communities. This differs from a classic top down model, which many organizations adopt. For a full list of the differences between these models, click here.
The Conventional Top Down Model
The Hunger Project's Bottom Up Empowerment Model
|Who are hungry people?||Beneficiaries whose basic needs must be met.||Principal authors and actors in development - hardworking, creative individuals who lack opportunities.|
|What must be done?||Provide services through government or charities.||Mobilize and empower people's self-reliant action, and stand in solidarity with them for their success.|
|Who is in charge?||Donors, who provide the money and hold implementers to account||Local people: through elected local leaders whom they hold to account.|