Teens fast for world hunger - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Teens fast for world hunger

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February 28. 2004

Albany -- An estimated one million young people around the country are voluntarily not eating this weekend. They're participants in the annual "30-Hour Famine" organized by the humanitarian organization World Vision.

These are the faces of the famine, starvation and hunger.

The images are as realistic as they are unforgettable. And the deadly reality of starvation that many children live with around the world motivated South Georgia teens to fast for 30 hours.

"It's  like a cramming up feeling like your stomach is  fixing to cave it from lack of food," says one teen in reaction to going several hours with out eating.

The 30-hour famine raises money to help needy children and teaches these teens what their peers around the globe live with every day.

"Yes it's more easy to go and ask someone for the money but it is more personal to go with out food for 30 hours,"says Margaret Taylor of World Vision.

Youth Outreach Counselor John Watson has seen the devastation of famine first hand, during a visit to Africa. He's now sharing his experiences with these kids.

"You saw little babies and  infants some  had to be three and four years old picking through garbage trying to find something to eat. You could see the bones in their ribs," says Watson.

And hours of reflection and sacrifice is opening their eyes and they say their grateful.

"We should not take stuff that we do have for granted and we have cloth and everything that many people don't have it has opened my eyes to see how fortunate we are to have things,"says 15 years old Faith Foggy.

"A lot our youth in America we don't understand the power that they possess and they don't need to go out and get a nine to five job to help some one,"says Watson.

And these youth hope to empower others to end  famine that kills so many children around the world.

World Vision estimates that nearly a half million young people in the U-S are participating , with another half million elsewhere around the world in the 30 hours of famine. Last year's the day organized raised 22 million dollars for starving children.

posted at 7:50PM by scott.hunter@walb.com