Members Come Together During Membership and Board Meetings
March 28, 2016
Rebecca Middleton, Chief Operating Officer, Alliance to End Hunger
On March 10, the Alliance held its semi-annual Membership and Board of Directors meeting in Washington, D.C. With over 50 members in attendance, this exciting time brought together a diverse group of individuals and organizations represented in our membership. Through a combination of panels and small groups, robust conversations led to discussions around current hunger-related issues and some of the broader focus areas of the Alliance’s work this year.
The first of these conversations was led by Executive Director Emeritus Tony Hall as part of a broader discussion on the current campaigning and election environment in the U.S., the Vote to End Hunger movement, and how the Alliance can enhance advocacy efforts in this unique context. Small groups convened later in the day to engage in deeper conversation about building political will, and strategize practical ways to focus a national spotlight on the issue of ending hunger, with an emphasis on how to approach possible future presidents around the issue of hunger in 2017.
The meeting also included panel discussions that highlighted some of the areas where we have made a stronger commitment this year as an organization. The first panel featured a conversation on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), led by Bread for the World Institute’s Director Asma Lateef. Highlighting in particular the universality of the SDGs, the panel emphasized the goal of achieving Zero Hunger by 2030 as a top priority for the Alliance’s work. A second panel, moderated by Sodexo’s Shondra Jenkins, featured representatives from member organizations spearheading the Alliance’s most recent commitment to youth engagement. As one of our newest initiative, leaders from our Board of Directors are leading a Youth Engagement Working Group to explore ways in which we can engage youth in our work.
In addition to these conversations, we were pleased to welcome our newest organizational members: InStove and Trees for the Future (TREES). InStove is a non-profit organization that implements institutional cookstoves in some of the world’s poorest communities to alleviate hunger, and has been designated as an “Implementing Partner” by the UN World Food Programme and UN High Commissioner for Refugees. Trees for the Future, another non-profit organization, plants trees in previously degraded or abandoned land to provide families with sustainable food sources, livestock feed, and income through their Forest Garden Program. The Alliance also welcomed an individual member, Daniel A. Silverstein. Mr. Silverstein has been a regular fixture in the Food Security policy space in DC, and we are excited to have his knowledge and insight.
The level of interaction and member engagement at this meeting was a testament to the strength of our diverse partnerships, and a chance to celebrate and motivate one another in our work to end hunger. I look forward to our continued work this year as we build the public and political will to end hunger everywhere.