LIHU‘E — Sunday it will be kau kau day around the world.
World Food Day, an event established by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations at its 20th General Conference in November, 1979, is observed internationally in more than 150 countries with the hope of raising awareness of the issues behind poverty and hunger, said Mayor Bernard Carvalho Jr. in a proclamation Friday at the Mo‘ikeha Building in Lihu‘e.
The event, scheduled worldwide for Sunday, also increases awareness, understanding and informed year-round action to alleviate hunger.
“With the dedication and resolve from the leaders of organizations which help to provide food for people of the Kaua‘i County, we can strengthen our mission to reducing hunger in our community through heightening awareness so that we can partner throughout the State of Hawai‘i and in the County of Kaua‘i to engage in the public and private efforts in establishing how we can better address hunger in our community,” Carvalho said.
Several initiatives will take place around the island on Sunday, in conjunction with World Food Day.
The Kaua‘i Independent Food Bank, launching its annual Holiday Food and Fund Drive, will be hosting its food collection day at nine different sites around the island from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., overlapping its holiday drive with World Food Day.
Wesley Perreira of the Hawai‘i Food Bank, wrapped up a day with the Veterans Administration Outreach Program for Homeless Veterans where he monitored a table of food which was free to homeless veterans, or veterans at risk of homelessness, Friday.
Another drive by five of eight credit unions on Kaua‘i overlaps with World Food Day and the International Credit Union Week.
Scott Tsuchiyama of the Kekaha Federal Credit Union said the participating credit unions will offer a rice scooper for each bag of rice contributed under the “Have a Rice Day” campaign for all credit unions in Hawai‘i.
Tsuchiyama said in addition to the Kekaha credit union, participating credit unions include the Kaumakani Federal Credit Union, the McBryde Federal Credit Union, the Garden Island Federal Credit Union and the Kaua‘i Community Federal Credit Union. All collections are earmarked for the Hawai‘i Food Bank.
Millions of people throughout the world suffer from hunger, the proclamation states. Especially vulnerable are women and children who live in poverty, homelessness, civil strife or famine. Studies suggest that in developing countries, 36 percent of children under the age of 6 years old are moderately or severely undernourished.
• Dennis Fujimoto, photographer and staff writer, can be reached at 245-3681 (ext. 253) or dfujimoto@ thegardenisland.com.