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Sources: April Mason, 785-532-6224, masona@k-state.edu;
and Joshua Mosier, 785-532-6085, joshuamo@k-state.edu
Website: http://www.k-state.edu/kscc/worldhunger/
Hometown connection/news tip: Overland Park, Kan.

Thursday, Feb. 7, 2013

Fighting world hunger: Kansas universities host international summit for hunger relief

MANHATTAN -- The Universities Fighting World Hunger Summit is coming to the Kansas City metropolitan area March 2-4 at the Sheraton Overland Park Hotel at the Convention Center.

Sponsored by a consortium of Kansas higher education institutions -- including Kansas State University -- as well as several nonprofit hunger organizations, the 2013 theme is "Raising the Volume: Building Awareness, Advocacy and Action about Hunger."

"While we need to do everything we can to help those who are hungry today, it is clear that our efforts cannot stop there," said Matt Lindsey, president of the Kansas Independent College Association and chair of the summit leadership committee. "We need to look at the policy priorities and cultural biases that are contributing to hunger around the world and then raise our voices to create sustainable change."

The summit is organized to serve as a learning environment where social responsibility and intellectual innovation come together to respond to the needs of our global community.

"Universities engaging to address real-world problems is core to our teaching, research and service missions," said April Mason, Kansas State University provost and senior vice president. "Hunger, food insecurity and poor nutrition are global issues facing all of us. The hunger summit was started eight years ago at Auburn University by students, faculty and community members who wanted to make a difference. I am gratified by the involvement of Kansas colleges, universities and community colleges over the past two years and excited that we are part of hosting this important summit in March. Please join us in this conversation for change and help make a difference in the growing issue of hunger."

In conjunction with the United Nations World Food Programme, the summit is an international convergence of students, scholars and practitioners mobilized to make fighting hunger a core value of higher education institutions worldwide. Previous summits have been at Auburn University, University of Guelph and Agricultural University of Honduras.

"Students have the potential to impact our nation's public and charitable response to hunger, and we need to get their creativity, intellectual power and energy behind this issue," said June Henton, founder of Universities Fighting World Hunger and dean of the Auburn University's College of Human Sciences.

The summit will have internationally known speakers in the area of hunger with keynote addresses from Roger Thurow, a member of the Chicago Council on Global Affairs and co-author of "Enough: Why the World's Poorest Starve in an Age of Plenty"; Max Finberg, director of the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Center for Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships; and Ritu Sharma, founder of Women Thrive Worldwide and a leading voice for international women's issues and U.S. foreign policy. Panel discussions, paper presentations and sessions on building political support and raising the public volume on hunger will be highlighted.

The registration deadline is Feb. 22. The registration fee is $100 for students and $225 for faculty, staff and community members. Online registration is available at http://www.k-state.edu/kscc/worldhunger.

The summit leadership committee includes representatives from Butler Community College, Fort Hays State University, Harvesters-The Community Food Network, Kansas Board of Regents, Kansas Campus Compact, Kansas Independent College Association, Kansas State University, Ottawa University, Outreach Inc. and Stop Hunger Now.