Historically, Argentina is known for having one of Latin America’s strongest economies, yet recent efforts to reduce national debt have resulted in an ongoing recession and led to growing poverty across the country. Today, rapid inflation contributes to increasing numbers of Argentines who find themselves below the poverty line, experiencing hunger and health problems.
Hunger has become a serious national issue, particularly among children and youth from low-income families. A 2018 national study conducted by the Pontificia Universidad Católica finds that 13 percent of children and adolescents in Argentina suffer from food insecurity. As affiliated health complications continue to rise, Argentina’s fight against hunger has never been more pressing. Organizations like Movilizarse have been leaders in the national response to the crisis. Movilizarse is a nonprofit that works with young people to build equity and solidarity toward community rights and values, and collaborates with volunteers to combat food insecurity. “La Chocleada,” or the “corn event,” is an inclusive program that connects farmers with local volunteers to bolster the supply chain by moving food from farms to communities.
Movilizarse volunteers understand first-hand the impact of these social responsibility programs. Around 80 percent of volunteers are students from vulnerable communities who assist farmers in harvesting crops that are donated. Volunteers facilitate the donation of freshly harvested corn and maize to food banks, primarily Argentina Food Bank Network and Caritas Argentina, as well as different healthcare centers throughout the country. Funds received through CAF America helped provide 8,285 kilograms of produce to 21,125 beneficiaries, the equivalent of 307,210 meals. Many children in these programs have already seen improvements in their physical health, which allows them to continue their education and, thereafter, join the workforce.
Motivated by the far reaching impact of this program, Movilizarse decided to expand it beyond Argentina’s borders in partnership with food relief initiatives in Uruguay, Mexico, and the United States. By joining forces with these partners, Movilizarse is building a robust network for a common cause to end widespread hunger.