Prince Harry & Duchess Meghan Announce Archewell’s First Major Project to Help Hunger Relief
Photo credit: Samir Hussein - Getty Images
From Harper's BAZAAR
They have spent much of the year carefully building their Archewell nonprofit, and now the Sussexes are ready to announce the first fruits of their labor - building aid centers to help feed people in disaster stricken areas.
An Archewell spokesperson confirmed to BAZAAR.com that Prince Harry and Duchess Meghan have entered into a philanthropic partnership with the World Central Kitchen charity to fund the construction of four special Community Relief Centers around the world.
The permanent structures are activated as service kitchens during crises such as natural disasters or health pandemics, but are also equipped in such a way that the local communities continue to be supported with food distribution, schooling, clinics and safe rooms for families and children. The center will be the first for World Central Kitchen, which has served 50 million meals in 17 countries since its inception by celebrity chef and restaurant owner José Andrés during the devastating 2010 earthquake in Haiti.
"The health of our communities depends on our ability to connect with our common humanity," said the Duke and Duchess of Sussex in an email statement shared with BAZAAR.com. "When we think of Chef Andrés and his incredible team at World Central Kitchen, we are reminded that even in a year of unimaginable hardship, there are so many amazing people ready and tireless to support one another. World Central Kitchen inspires us into action through compassion. "
Work is currently underway on the nonprofit company's first Community Relief Center to be built in the Commonwealth of Dominica, which was hit hard by Hurricanes Irma and Maria in 2017 and has not yet recovered from deep damage to homes, roads and forests. Puerto Rico, where Chef Andrés launched an important food security response after Hurricane Maria, will be the second target. The last two locations will be announced in 2021. The Sussexes and Andrés are striving to "gain additional partners for building more aid agencies in regions around the world," a source said.
In a statement, Chef Andrés said: "We are more determined than ever to continue this important work and we are proud that it will go hand in hand with the Archewell Foundation and the Duke and Duchess of Sussex. I met you both are good and believe their values are directly in line with what we stand for at World Central Kitchen. "
Ending hunger and achieving universal food security is one of the greatest challenges the world faces today. According to the UN Food and Agriculture Organization, more than 690 million people worldwide are currently undernourished. Due to the impact of COVID-19, the number of malnourished children and food insecurity are expected to increase by more than 132 million due to the pandemic-triggered recession and ongoing economic slowdown.
The desert locust outbreak in several African countries and in Yemen starved more than 35 million people last year. In June, UN Secretary-General António Guterres warned that the world has "faced a food crisis worse than any other for at least 50 years" as poor people who cannot have basic food within their reach have no social protection.
It is crises like this that have heightened the urgent need for coordinated hunger relief efforts in communities everywhere - both immediately and in the long term, to strengthen food supply chains.
The Sussexes' past experiences in community restoration make Archewell the perfect choice for World Central Kitchen, which not only provides immediate famine relief in national disasters, but also uses groceries to empower communities and strengthen the local economy. Prince Harry has been involved in a number of relief efforts, including being with Team Rubicon in Nepal in 2015 to help locals after a devastating earthquake. And Meghan's work with women from the Hubb Community Kitchen in the UK, who have been feeding local communities in London since 2015 after the Grenfell Tower Fire tragedy.
"This year I've seen many, many examples of neighbors who support neighbors, of communities that come together to get through difficult times," says boss Andrés. "At our roots we believe in each other by doing what is just as right for strangers as it is for our friends and family. World Central Kitchen and I see a world full of dignity, empathy and humanity. We believe in the healing power of food, and we would like to say wherever there is a fight so that hungry people can eat, we will be there. "
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