AJWS President, Ruth Messinger, Serving On Obama Poverty Task Force

Hunger and Food Security are Key Areas of Focus

New York, NY; July 20, 2009— AJWS president Ruth W. Messinger has been appointed to serve on the Obama administration’s Task Force on Global Poverty and Development. The task force was created by the President’s Advisory Council on Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships, which is working to identify areas in which improved, expanded and innovative partnerships between government and faith-based community organizations will yield results in serving individuals, families and communities.

The Task Force on Global Poverty and Development is one of six task forces formed by the council. Its focus will be to identify key issues pertaining to hunger and poverty and recommend partnerships to effectively address these issues. The task force will also look at best practices and models for partnership and it will determine where current government policy is inhibiting effective partnership. Finally, it will examine how the Obama administration can partner with domestic faith-based and community groups at the grassroots level to raise awareness of global poverty and to develop a call to action for all Americans. 

AJWS supports hundreds of grassroots organizations addressing poverty at the community level throughout the developing world. Messinger says that food security— both a principal cause and effect of poverty— will be a primary focus of the task force’s work.  

“This task force will be a crucial agent in ensuring that the administration’s strategy on global poverty reduction reflects the reality that hunger and poverty are deeply intertwined, and, in order for all communities to thrive, the United States government must work in partnership with local groups— in the most impoverished nations— since they are best positioned to deliver change.

“With more than a billion people worldwide affected by chronic hunger, now is the time to do something to ensure that locally-based farmers and farm communities have the protection of their land rights, technical assistance, agricultural inputs, and modifications in international trade policy that will allow them to compete on a level playing field.”

Once the task force has concluded its assessment, it will present a set of draft recommendations to the council. It will then present a final report to President Obama early next year.  

For More Information

If you are a member of the press and wish to obtain information about our work or speak to a member of our global team on deadline, please contact Tanyanika Davis, Director of Media Relations, at tdavis@ajws.org.