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UVI “Hunger Banquet” Kicks off World Food Day

World Food Day photo

The University of the Virgin Islands joins the nation in observing World Food Day with activities beginning Friday, Oct. 16, at the Great Hall on the Albert A. Sheen Campus on St. Croix.

The events begin with a “Hunger Banquet,” designed to educate students in grades five through eight about the challenges of hunger and world poverty.

In an interactive exercise, participants will be randomly assigned status as wealthy, middle class or lowest income. Each will be seated at tables with the wealthy mingling with middle class and lower income participants. The lowest income occupants will receive only a glass of water for their meal, while the wealthy group will receive a full plate of food and drink. The middle class will receive only a minimal portion of food.

“This is a way for the students to experience the challenges of poverty and world hunger distribution first hand,” said Clarice Clarke, of the UVI Cooperative Extension Service. “After the banquet we ask the students to describe their experience and what changes they may make in their lives based on the experience.”

Representatives from the VI Department of Education and community leaders are also invited to attend.

World Food Day activities continue from noon – 6 p.m., Sunday, Oct. 18, with a food vendor’s court, farmers market workshops, and live entertainment.

Each year the cooperative extension service highlights three agricultural projects. This year will feature workshops on okra production, soursop production, and goat production.

Young chefs will show off their talents in the World Food Day 4-H Youth Super Chef Competition. The public is also invited to bring their best soursop dessert, preserves, or drink recipes in a “Soursop Blast Competition.”

World Food Day is sponsored by UVI’s Cooperative Extension Service, the UVI Agricultural Experiment Station and the V.I. Department of Agriculture.