Contrary to the title of this post, I am not here to speak on my eating habits but the ever increasing food prices triggered by the global food crisis.

bread-kenya

I am sure that I am not the only one who has witnessed the prices of basic commodities going through roof in the past few months.

And what’s amazing to me is that even after all the talk on the reasons and effects of this, nothing seems to be happening. And Kenya is no exception. However, there seems to be a ‘good’ reason — if not an excuse — for this.

For example, at the beginning of this year the price of bread, which was 20 Kenyan Shillings (Kshs) went up by almost 40 percent (Kshs 28), and this was attributed to the post election violence. Later on in March when things had come back to normal, the price still went up and this time the reason was, “there is a food shortage as a result of the post election violence.” In May the price of bread rose to Kshs 30, and this time the reason was, “lack of rain in wheat production areas.”

Come June the price rose to Kshs 32 and this time, “there’s a shortage of fertilizer in the country.” If that was not enough, the price jumped to Kshs 35 later in that same month, and by now everyone was complaining. The reason given was the ever increasing cost of fuel, and this my friends is the song of the moment, with the new price of bread at Kshs 40.

This is in fact a replica of what is happening with the other food commodities, which are referred to as basic commodities, and which I am sad to say are the “common man’s” means of survival.

If that’s not bad enough, a recent survey by an international agency (USAID) is warning of below-average agricultural production in the country. Ouch! And this is due to an estimated 25 percent reduction of cultivation area. The “fun” part is that all this is because of, you guessed it — the post election violence and high cost of farm inputs.

The report goes further to indicate that inadequate and poorly distributed rainfall in East Africa is to blame for the food crisis. Most areas in Kenya received less than 50 percent of expected rain during the March-May rainy season, which is supposed to be the long rain season.

On top of that there has been a scramble for water and pasture in most areas of Kenya, which has led to the deterioration in animals’ physique, earlier-than-normal migrations and reduced prices for the animals.

You can bet that the number of people without enough food will continue to rise, especially among the market-dependant populations in urban areas.

So what can we do? Sincerely, I don’t know, but I leave you all with these words from Luke 3:10-11 (NIV):

“What should we do then?” the crowd asked. John answered, “The man with two tunics should share with him who has none, and the one who has food should do the same.”

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  • Anthony grew up in Kawangware, a Kenyan slum known for drug abuse, prostitution, crime and high levels of poverty. He was enrolled in Compassion’s sponsorship program at age six and graduated from the Leadership Development Program in 2008.

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  1. Sarah
    Jul 18, 2008
    at 10:18 am

    Wow that is amazing! I am so glad there are strong Christians out there all over the world preachign. It’s amazing!

  2. Jul 18, 2008
    at 11:40 am

    It’s truly is sad when you think about it. When you asked the question, “What should we do then?” another verse crossed my mind. The verse was when there was a huge crowd in front of Jesus and His disciples asked Him, how they could feed them. Christ answer was: “You feed them.” And Christ took the little bit that the boy had and fed the entire multitude.

    Kees

  3. Jul 18, 2008
    at 1:14 pm

    I have four (4) Compassion events lined up for the next 3 weekends. At this moment I have 40 child packets on hand.

    Please joining me in praying for these events:

    1) Star 99.1 FM Beach Fest on July 19

    2) Compassion Sunday presentation on July 20

    3) Bridge FM Bridge-Fest July 25 and July 26

    4) Mercy Me Concert August 9 (which they don’t know yet that I am going to be there with child packets).

    Pray that Jesus Christ will be glorified and all these events and that I will run out of packets by end of day July 19.

  4. Jul 18, 2008
    at 5:48 pm

    Anthony, I read this this morning and was going to comment, but I couldn’t think of anything to say. As is true of many people, I think, when they become aware of a problem this bad and this widespread, I just felt overwhelmed, again. It’s too enormous to comprehend. Yet, as I thought that, I realized that it is not too enormous for our God. Between your verse and the one Kees referred to, I think we know our task. Getting it done before many more lives are lost still boggles me. I want a quick fix, and there just isn’t one.

    Dave, you’ve challenged me to put more space between me and my computer, next week, to make some calls on pastors and try to find or make some opportunities! God bless you and your efforts, and may every child represented in your packets find a sponsor, tomorrow. And if not tomorrow, then by the end of Sunday.

  5. Sara
    Jul 18, 2008
    at 5:57 pm

    Dave -That is awesome! I will be praying. I just volunteered for a compassion radio marathon and 100 children were sponsored!

    I recently got the opportunity to go on a trip to Kenya. I did not see the prices of food, but I was suppprised overall at the costs of basic items.

    The picture reminds me so much of the kids that we worked with. And we had bread and tea every morning just like those kids have.

  6. Sara
    Jul 18, 2008
    at 6:07 pm

    Anthony, wew you a part of the LDP June work camp?

  7. Sara
    Jul 18, 2008
    at 6:08 pm

    sorry, “were”

  8. Jul 18, 2008
    at 11:58 pm

    you are doing a great job! .. thanks very much for sharing!

  9. Jul 19, 2008
    at 8:52 am

    That is the sweetest photo ever!

  10. Jul 19, 2008
    at 12:22 pm

    Hi everyone,

    Good to be back.

    Now to reply to your comments:

    To:

    1. Sara:
    I couldn’t agree more. Thats what we need right now; Christians who are not afraid to know Christ and to make him know.

    2. Kees Boer:
    Amen to that.

    3. Compassion dave:
    Be assured by the fact that starting to day I together with other friends of mine we will be praying for you and all these events and we are trusting God for an upheaval..

    4. Vicki Small:
    Amen Vicki, Amen. Indeed theres nothing impossible for our God.

    5. Sara:
    Hi there Sara,

    Were you with the mission group that came from US? Which area did u go to?

    As for the marathon, thats just one sign that you are a Kenyan considering that Kenyans are famous for running the marathon. Great Job.

    And yes I was part of the LDP June work camp and the group that went to Mutomo.

    6. Poor child – Africa:
    Thanks a lot and you too are doing a great job. Thanks for the comment.

    7: Juli Jarvis:
    All the credit goes to Chris.

    Thanks again for all your comments and time to read the post. God bless.
    Anthony

  11. Sara
    Jul 19, 2008
    at 5:41 pm

    Anthony,
    I was a part of the US group, yes. I went to Muchakos, but I remember seeing you before and after the camps. You really stood out as a leader. I pray that God will fulfill the dreams he has put in your heart.

  12. Aug 1, 2008
    at 1:12 pm

    To sara:

    Thanks alot for that compliment and blessing. I just wish we interacted coz you guys were so many and all of you looked the same to me, so its really had to remember your faces.

    But all in all I am glad to have met you and I pray that God continue to move in a special way in your life the same way you were special to us.

    And remember you are always welcome back.

    God bless.

    Anthony

  13. Aug 11, 2008
    at 10:45 am

    :)

  14. Teri
    Jan 30, 2009
    at 2:54 pm

    Excellent post.

    I have 2 Compassion kids in Kenya (that I was blessed to visit in Nov ’06), plus 3 from different programs. They all tell me how hard it is now.

  15. Feb 4, 2009
    at 11:57 am

    Luke 11:5 Then he said to them, “Suppose one of you has a friend, and he goes to him at midnight and says, ‘Friend, lend me three loaves of bread, 6 because a friend of mine on a journey has come to me, and I have nothing to set before him.’

    7 “Then the one inside answers, ‘Don’t bother me. The door is already locked, and my children are with me in bed. I can’t get up and give you anything.’ 8 I tell you, though he will not get up and give him the bread because he is his friend, yet because of the man’s boldness he will get up and give him as much as he needs.

    9 “So I say to you: Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. 10 For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks, the door will be opened.

    11 “Which of you fathers, if your son asks for a fish, will give him a snake instead? 12 Or if he asks for an egg, will give him a scorpion? 13 If you then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!”

    John 15:7 If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be given you.

    “…whatever you wish…”

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