FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
October 11, 2011
Caty Borum Chattoo
San Francisco, Calif. -- Millions of people in the Horn of Africa continue to face catastrophic drought and famine -- but the devastation could be averted in the future, according to a new documentary special from Oxfam America and Link TV's ViewChange series. The half-hour special, "ViewChange: Africa's Last Famine," investigates solutions to chronic hunger -- including weather insurance and investing in small farmers -- and disputes the notion that famine is simply caused by a lack of food in the global supply.
Produced to provide new insight into global hunger and global food production in recognition of World Food Day (October 16), the program features the story of one Ethiopian mother and farmer, Medhin Reda, who is using weather insurance to withstand periods of drought. Through interviews with Francis Moore Lappé, the award-winning humanitarian and bestselling author of Diet for a Small Planet, the show takes a hard look at food justice. According to Moore Lappé in the documentary, "the world produces more than enough for all of us to thrive...the real crisis is the crisis of human relationships, how we share in power."
Oxfam has launched a major humanitarian response for drought stricken areas of Ethiopia, Kenya, and Somalia, working closely with other local and international organizations in the Horn of Africa to provide water, sanitation and hygiene services, emergency food and cash-for-work programs. Oxfam aims to reach 3.5 million people across the region with emergency relief, while helping farming and herding communities protect their future.
"With the ongoing crisis in the Horn of Africa, on this World Food Day we wanted to spotlight innovative solutions that can help us avoid such hunger and suffering in the future," said Raymond C. Offenheiser, president of Oxfam America. "Investing in the resilience of local farmers in the face of disasters is a central part of the long-term solution."
The premiere of "ViewChange: Africa's Last Famine," is part of Link TV's ViewChange.org site and ViewChange documentary series, which provide powerful, evidence-based videos that demonstrate progress in global development and the UN Millennium Development Goals, along with the latest news and action opportunities for users. ViewChange.org is working with non-profit organizations, film distributors and individual filmmakers to combine at one site documentaries, news reports and viewer-generated films of varying length and style. With the help of next-generation semantic Web technology, videos are linked directly with the latest news and most recent social actions so that users can search for specific topics, watch real stories from around the world, learn the latest news (from more than 12,000 news sources around the world) and take action.
The documentary is available to view and download online at www.ViewChange.org and www.oxfamamerica.org, and it will broadcast on Link TV on Friday, October 14 (7 p.m. EDT) and again on Tuesday, October 18 (11 p.m. EDT) on DIRECTV Channel 375 and DISH Network Channel 9410.
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Link Media uses media and the power of stories to engage, inform and inspire its audiences to participate in transformational, sustainable change on issues of global importance. Founded in 1999, Link Media operates the Link TV national network and the websites LinkTV.org and ViewChange.org. An independent and non-commercial media company, Link Media acquires, produces and delivers global news, documentaries and cultural programming over three distribution channels: broadcast, web and handheld devices. Link Media presents diverse perspectives on critical global issues that are underserved by conventional media, and gives voice to points of view that would otherwise go unheard.
A pioneer in news and current affairs programming, Link TV has been recognized for its original news programs including the Peabody Award-winning daily broadcast Mosaic: News from the Middle East, which monitors and airs unedited selections of news reports from more than 43 Middle-Eastern broadcasters. Link TV also offers original, innovative participatory programs promoting national and global citizen action. Much of Link's programming is not available anywhere else on American television.
Link TV is available as basic service on DIRECTV channel 375 and DISH Network channel 9410, reaching more than 33 million U.S. households. Select Link TV programming also airs on 220 cable outlets, including in New York, Los Angeles and San Francisco, reaching an additional 20 million homes. Link also streams much of its content online at LinkTV.org. For complete background information, program schedule, and Internet streaming, go to LinkTV.org.
Follow on Twitter @viewchange and @linktv, and on Facebook at www.Facebook.com/LinkTV and www.Facebook.com/ViewChange.
Oxfam America is an international relief and development organization that creates lasting solutions to poverty, hunger, and injustice. Together with individuals and local groups in more than 90 countries, Oxfam saves lives, helps people overcome poverty, and fights for social justice. To join our efforts or learn more, go to www.oxfamamerica.org.
Follow Oxfam America on Twitter @oxfamamerica and Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/oxfamamerica