What do two farming families in Saskatchewan and northern Tanzania have in common?
A lot, according to a 28-minute documentary produced by Canadian Foodgrains Bank, a partnership of 15 churches and church-based groups, including the Primate’s World Relief and Development Fund, the Anglican Church of Canada’s relief and development arm.
Facing Hunger takes a look at how two farms on opposite sides of the world share a common passion for stewardship of the earth and for ending hunger.
The documentary airs on Salt & Light Television Network on the following Eastern Time slots: June 22 (8:30 p.m. and 12:30 a.m.), June 23 (2 p.m.), June 26 (8 p.m. and 12 a.m.), June 27 (1 p.m.), and June 28 (9 a.m.).
Those without access to Salt & Light channel can watch the documentary online at the above times.
Facing Hunger takes viewers to the farm of Randy and Marion Ausmus near Leader, Sask., and the farm of Zadock and Ndettaniswa Kitomary in northern Tanzania.
“Both families love farming. And they take the role as stewards of God’s creation seriously,” said a press statement by Canadian Foodgrains Bank’s communications co-ordinator, Emily Cain. Cain toured the two farms in January and discovered that while they differed in scale—the Ausmus family had thousands of acres of land, while the Kitomary family tilled 1.5 acres—both were committed to responsible practices.
“Both families were willing to try new things to find the best way of producing food and caring for their land,” said Cain. “Perhaps even stronger than their love of the land was both families’ desire to see something good from what they were doing – something that went beyond themselves.”
Both wanted to share the fruits of their labour with those facing hunger, she said. Hunger kills more people than AIDS, malaria and tuberculosis combined, according to the World Food Programme (WFP). Almost a billion people worldwide do not have enough to eat and are undernourished, said WFP on its website.
The two families share a connection with the Canadian Foodgrains Bank that has made this goal possible.
The Ausmus family belong to the Southwest Growing Project, which is composed of farmers who grow crops in support of the Canadian Foodgrains Bank. Part of Canadian Foodgrains Bank mandate is to collect grain and cash donations that provide assistance to people with urgent and immediate food needs. It also supports projects that “work with communities to improve food security” and nutrition.
In Tanzania, the Kitomary family received support from the Foodgrains Bank through a training project run by the Mennonite Central Committee and its local partner, Global Service Corp.
The new farming practices they learned have increased their harvest by as much as three times, said Cain. “Now, not only do they have enough food for themselves, but they also share with neighbours in need. And they also pass on what they have learned to others by regularly hosting other farmers for training sessions.”
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