Bread Enews 2014-03

The Federal Budget Mill Now that President Barack Obama has submitted his proposed FY 2015 budget, it is worth reviewing the annual budget process – and why it is such a crucial part of Bread’s advocacy work. This article has two web-only bonuses not included in the print edition: a timeline of the budget process and a list of what’s in the “basket” of poverty-focused development assistance (PFDA). Read more »
Member Profile: In the Beginning As Bread for the World begins its 40th anniversary year, Rev. Arthur Simon, Bread’s founder, reflects on how the organization started. Read more »
Advocacy in Action: Gathered and Sent “We are facing a goal worthy of our generation … It is the defeat of humanity’s oldest enemies: poverty, hunger.” Read more »
Policy Focus: Two Steps Forward This year’s Offering of Letters campaign brings Bread members on a journey of urging Congress to make reforms to our federal government’s programs that provide food aid overseas. Read more »
Field Focus: Farmers Feed Refugees in Rwanda By purchasing food locally, USAID and WFP are able to save considerable time and money. Read more »

Act Now!

Contact your members of Congress, and tell them you support robust funding for poverty-focused development assistance programs in all upcoming budget and appropriations negotiations.

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March 14, 2014 at 5:35 am Leave a comment

Bread Enews 2014-02

Bread in 2014, Sliced and Quartered As we set out on another year of advocacy, here is an overview of what you, our members, can expect in our work together. It will be a busy year of several campaigns and issue themes—some familiar, some new—running at various times and sometimes simultaneously. Read more »
Getting Your Congregation Involved in an Offering of Letters We are often asked, “How do I get started with the Offering of Letters?” Organizing a letter-writing event to urge our leaders to help hungry people around the world is easier than many think. Read more »
A Gem Worth More Than $800 Million Despite gradual cuts to the overall international affairs budget in the last three years, poverty-focused development assistance (PFDA) accounts grew in FY 2014 by more than $800 million. Read more »
State of the Union: Words Not There, but Speech Hit Right Topics President Obama reiterated his focus on strengthening the economic safety net and developing strategic community partnerships both domestically and abroad. Read more »
Establishing a Moral Government We must push our leaders to play a significant role in stemming hunger, poverty, and disease at home and abroad. Bread uses its influence to call for policies that are characteristic of a moral government. Read more »
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The State of Poverty 50 Years Ago and Now

This year marks a half century since President Lyndon B. Johnson declared the War on Poverty. Bread for the World welcomes a new bipartisan debate about how to reduce poverty in the United States.

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Also in this issue:
SNAP: It’s a Mixed Bag
Bread Slices: 2014 Offering of Letters, Bread for the World’s 40th Anniversary Dinner, the Hunger-Free Communities Summit, and more!
Take Our Bread Newsletter Survey!

February 15, 2014 at 7:08 am Leave a comment

Farm bill to cut Food Stamps, please urge your reps and senators to vote against it!

Oregon Food Bank is extremely disappointed that the congressional farm bill committee has approved a bill that includes a draconian cut of $8.6 billion to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP).
Oregon Food Bank opposes this bill because of the inclusion of this deep cut to food benefits that will lead to increased hunger in our state. In fact, Oregon would be disproportionately impacted because it is one of just 15 states that utilize the USDA option this bill restricts. If the conference bill is approved, Congress would cut benefits for 78,000 Oregon households, each of which would lose an average of $58 a month. That’s more than 22 meals – enough for a family member to eat for a week.
Beyond the immediate impact on families that struggle to purchase enough food, this cut would cause Oregon to lose $54.3 million in SNAP benefits per year. This is money that is spent in grocery stores and farmers’ markets across the state and helps support local businesses.
The farm bill proposal comes on the heels of an $11-billion cut in SNAP benefits last November that reduced benefits for all participating households.
The bill now goes to both chambers of the U.S. Congress – the Senate and House of Representatives – for full votes.
Please voice your support for Oregon families experiencing hunger. Email your Senators and House member to tell them to oppose the farm bill with its $8.6-billion SNAP cut.

Sincerely,

Nate Reaver Advocacy & Community Engagement Coordinator Oregon Food Bank

January 28, 2014 at 7:43 am Leave a comment

Bread Enews 2014-01

Reforming U.S. Food Aid The devastation wrought by major international disasters in recent years, such as last year’s typhoon in the Philippines, 2010’s massive earthquake in Haiti, and the ongoing crisis in Syria, shows how valuable U.S. food aid is in addressing humanitarian emergencies around the world. These crises also show that, despite the successes of U.S. food aid, reforms are needed to the programs that provide it. Reforming U.S. food aid is the focus of Bread for the World’s 2014 Offering of Letters. Read more »
Act Now! Congress left town without extending unemployment insurance, abruptly cutting off 1.3 million unemployed workers from benefits just days after Christmas. Read more »
Praying for Change and Being Changed Hundreds of thousands of Christians around the world prayed for an end to hunger on Dec. 10 as part of an international “wave of prayer.” Read more »
A Full Hunger Agenda for 2014 Last year ended with a mixed-bag list of accomplishments for Congress regarding hunger- and poverty-related legislation. Read more »
Creating Champions for a Cause Sam Daley-Harris’ Reclaiming Our Democracy challenges organizations to provide a deeper level of empowerment to their members. Read more »

January 11, 2014 at 4:53 am Leave a comment

Bread Enews 2013-12

Praying into 2014 I invite you to join Bread for the World and our partners in the Circle of Protection in supporting Caritas Internationalis’ new campaign to end hunger, which is endorsed by Pope Francis. They are calling for people to pray at noon on Dec. 10 in each time zone, starting in Samoa and proceeding west in a “wave of prayer” as the day goes on. Read more »
Act Now! At this very moment, leaders in Congress are finalizing a deal on the farm bill. At this critical moment, Congress needs to hear from you. Read more »
Bread with Your Coffee, Senator? This is a story of how Bread for the World advocacy methods work. Our story includes a senator, a barista, and a wealthy fundraiser; but this isn’t a tale of inside-the-Beltway intrigue. Read more »
On Faith: Listening with Heart When I read the story of Jesus’ birth recently, what stood out was not the journey to Bethlehem or the birth of Jesus in such humble conditions, but rather Mary’s response to who Jesus is. Read more »
Policy Focus: Limited Time Left Congress has only a few days left to finish the farm bill and reach a budget agreement that addresses some of the sequester. Read more »
Welcoming New Board Members and Officers Bread for the World members recently elected new members of its board of directors, joining 25 returning board members. Read more »

December 11, 2013 at 8:18 am Leave a comment

Bread Enews: Protecting Foreign Assistance

Protecting Foreign Assistance During the upheavals over the budget in recent years, Bread for the World and our partners have been successful in maintaining funding for U.S. programs that help hungry and poor people around the world. Read more »
Act Now! Congress has only a short window of time to agree on legislation that has enormous consequences for struggling families at home and abroad. Read more »
Field Focus: Fertile Ground Maria and Arnulfo Roblero are becoming experts on their own development. They have their future in their own hands. Read more »
Policy Focus: Your Voice is Essential As we move toward the end of the year, members of Congress have many important decisions before them. Read more »
Reflections on Advent as a Time of Preparation Advent is a time of preparation and expectation for the coming of Christ, the time before celebrating the “joy to the world” that God’s incarnation becomes. Read more »
Member Profile: Susan and Russell Stall Bread members Susan and Russell Stall of Greenville, N.C., work to change systems and empower people. Read more »

November 16, 2013 at 7:45 am Leave a comment

Coming months bring busy Congressional agenda for hunger and poverty issues

The Oct. 16 budget deal in Congress re-opened the government and raised the debt ceiling for a few months longer. This deal and new deadlines have set off an intense period in which Bread for the World will have to work extremely hard to protect funding for programs that address hunger and help people move out of poverty in the U.S. and around the world.

From now through January, Bread for the World’s primary focus will be on three legislative priorities:

  1. Protecting SNAP and international food-aid reform during the final negotiations on the farm bill
  2. Advocating for a 2014 budget agreement that ends the sequester and provides revenues
  3. Advancing comprehensive immigration reform

Last week, some parts of this busy fall and winter legislative agenda got underway. Congress’ budget conference committee held an organizing meeting and its first public meeting, and the farm bill conference committee held its first public meeting. Meanwhile, on Nov. 1, $11 billion in food stamp (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or SNAP) cuts went into effect.

We will need your help in order to achieve our legislative priorities, especially since the timing that these issues will be dealt with is tight. Here are key dates to note:

November 2013

  • 13: Budget conference committee holds its second public meeting
  • 25: Bread for the World Institute releases its 2014 Hunger Report: Ending Hunger in America

December 2013

  • 13: Deadline for the budget conference committee to reach an agreement

January 2014

  • 1: Certain effects of expired farm bill begin (milk prices, etc.)
  • 15: Continuing resolution for federal budget expires. Congress must pass a spending bill to prevent another government shutdown.

February 2014

  • 7: Debt-ceiling extension expires. Treasury Department begins using extraordinary measures to prevent default.

March 2014 or later

  • Treasury Department exhausts all extraordinary measures, and Congress must raise the debt ceiling to prevent a default.

Throughout this intense period, we will be calling on you again and again to help urge your members of Congress to advance our legislative priorities. Thank you for your commitment to ending hunger and for going with us into these busy few months.


November 10, 2013 at 1:59 am Leave a comment

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