From 4 students in a classroom, to hundreds of individuals from around the globe, people are stepping up to tell the world why they care. The Why Care Campaign was started at Auburn earlier this year to raise awareness of world hunger and, as the name implies, the campaign that asks people the question “why do you care about hunger?”
The main goal of the campaign is to raise awareness by having individuals send in their written statement about why they care about hunger. Participants are asked to write out “I care about hunger because,” complete the sentence with their reason, then photograph themselves holding their sign and send it in to the campaign’s social media sites.
“It gets people thinking about how hunger impacts their lives and how they can impact hunger. The point is to empower people to answer this question, then actually do something about it in the future,” said Devin Yeomans, founding member of the Why Care Campaign.
When asked why she cares, Yeomans said, “because hunger is debilitating.“ As she spoke it was clear that she had a passion for seeing world hunger overcome. This desire to take action led her to seek a way to get plugged into the war on hunger while at Auburn.
“I started attending the Committee of 19 meetings and I was immediately struck by how, even though it’s one of 300 organizations on campus, it stands out,” said Yeomans. “It’s actually doing good, these students actually care about the cause they’re fighting for and they’re actually making moves toward ending hunger. It’s amazing.”
After seeing these students putting passion into action, Yeomans wanted to learn more. She declared the Hunger Studies minor and began taking classes to learn more about the causes and consequences of hunger and what could be done about alleviate this crisis.
The Why Care Campaign began as a class project in the hunger studies capstone course. The students who began the project for a grade soon realized the campaign had potential far beyond their classroom. They decided to carry their work through the summer to organize the campaign with the goal of making the effort become global.
Before school had started back in the fall, the student leadership committee managing the campaign met this goal. The World Food Program, Universities Fighting World Hunger and the Food and Agriculture Organization all partnered with the Why Care Campaign. The cause that started in a small classroom on Auburn University’s campus now partners with organizations that are on the frontlines of the war on hunger around the world.
These partnerships have added the goal of raising awareness for World Food Day, Oct. 16. According to Yeomans, “Our goal up to World Food Day is to upload 10,000 pictures. So far we’ve had almost 1,000 photos sent in. A few of the more notable ones have come from Auburn Alum and former NBA star Charles Barkley and Olympic Gold Medalist Tyler Mcgill.”
To join in and tell the world why you care, like the Why Care Campaign page on Facebook or follow @WhyCare_ on Twitter. For information on bringing the Why Care Campaign to a campus or organization near you, visit www.universitiesfightingworldhunger.org/whycare.