The Presbyterian Hunger Program has allocated $1.3 million in grants to fight hunger in the United States and across the world.

The funds were authorized by the nine-member Hunger Program Advisory Committee during its semi-annual meeting here Oct. 14-15. The recipients were selected from a pool of applications submitted to the committee. 

"It is wonderful that Presbyterians are so generous in giving to the One Great Hour of Sharing Offering that enables PHP's work to alleviate hunger around the world and to support the ministries of local congregations," said Hal Johnson of Durant, Okla., chairman of the advisory committee. "I'm always impressed by the commitment and creativity of so many of the grant recipients, many of whom are doing tremendous work with limited resources."

PHP's work is funded by 36 percent of the One Great Hour of Sharing Offering, given by congregations for outreach since 1949 and collected on Easter Sunday. The remainder of the offering goes to Presbyterian Disaster Assistance and Self-Development of People, a long-standing program that funds organizations of poor people who are working to change their own lives.

About $610,000 in international grants will go to nearly 20 countries to fund efforts such as African small farmers setting up grain and seed banks to feed their communities when food prices increase and an olive oil operation in the Galilee region of northern Israel that is staffed by female Jewish and Arab Israelis.

The West Africa Initiative — a project highlighted by the One Great Hour of Sharing Offering in 2010 — received $50,000. PHP, PDA and SDOP are collaborating on this multi-year agricultural training and development project impacting 20 rural communities in Sierre Leone and Liberia as they rebuild rural economies following years of civil war.

National grants totaling $690,000 are funding education, direct relief, public policy and development in diverse settings, including PC(USA) congregations and presbyteries, community farms, rural crisis centers, councils of churches and agencies that assist migrant workers.

Among national grants, recipients were:

  • Eight grants for development assistance, including Hunger Action LA; Nashville Homeless Power Project; and Rural and Migrant Ministries in Poughkeepsie, N.Y.
  • 10 churches received funds for direct relief work, including the Open Door Kitchen of First Presbyterian of St. Joseph, Mo.; the Good Neighbor Food Pantry of Allentown Presbyterian Church, Allentown, N.J.; and Morning Star Food Pantry of Morning Star Presbyterian Church, Bayville, N.J.
  • Five education grants were approved, including Interfaith Action of Southwest Florida, Immokalee, Fla.; the Greater Cincinnati Coalition for the Homeless; and FISH Hospitality Pantries, the Northwest Hospitality Pantry Community Organizing Project, Knoxville, TN. In addition, 37 presbyteries received education grants to support the hunger ministries in which they actively engage congregations.
  • Public policy grants went to 15 organizations, including the Center for Civil Justice, Saginaw, Mich.; the New Mexico Conference of Churches, Bernalillo, N.M.; and the National Family Farm Coalition, Washington, D.C.
  • Lifestyle integrity grants were given to a number of fair trade organizations, including the Boston Faith and Justice Network, Partners for Just Trade of St. Louis, Mo.; and Global Exchange of San Francisco, Calif..
  • A number of grants were also awarded to organizations promoting farming and urban gardening, including, the farm at Ghost Ranch Conference Center, Abiquiu, N.M.; Huerto de la Familia, Eugene, Ore.; Youth Launch of Austin, Texas; and Angelic Organics Learning Center, Caledonia, Ill.

International grants went to the major PHP partners with presbytery networks, including RELUFA of Cameroon; CHETHANA of India; UMAVIDA of Bolivia; FONDAMA of Haiti; and Joining Hands-El Salvador. Additional grants went to Sindyanna of Galilee; the NAGARTA Water for Life of Niger; and the Allahadbad Agricultural Institute in India.

A map on the PHP website will provide more information about each grant recipient. If you would like to connect with any of this work, please contact the Presbyterian Hunger Program.

Information furninshed by the Presbyterian Hunger Program.