The Global Issue of Food Poverty
In college, we have all experienced waiting for the grant to come through and living off a solid diet of plain pasta, cereal and bread washed down with a bag of cans. On the grand scale, we know it is all temporary and that someday we will afford the sauce for that pasta.
With the global growth in inequality, the rich are getting richer, the poor are getting poorer and world hunger is a growing issue. Chronic undernourishment currently impacts roughly 815 million people which are over 10% of the world’s population. Undernourishment impacts those suffering from it in a multitude of ways:
- It causes a high infant mortality rate
- Increases vulnerability to common illnesses
- Impedes biologic development and even economic growth due to a decreased likelihood of attending school
While studying at Trinity Conor Leen became more aware of the issue of inequality and how as a society, not enough is being done to tackle issues like food poverty. To address the problem of world hunger and to make a positive impact on society Connor and 5 of his fellow Trinity classmates set up the social enterprise Stampify.
“We chose to tackle this problem because we are capable individuals who believe that nobody should be unsure of where their next meal will come from. That is our vision”
Stampify’s biggest concern around food poverty was the decreased likelihood of attending school, as education is the utmost importance for escaping poverty. For this reason, Stampify chose to work with Mary’s Meals to provide meals in childrens’ schools, to fight world hunger and encourage education. Mary’s Meals are an international aid charity focused on one goal - that every child receives a nutritious daily meal in a place of education. They work in Africa, Asia, Latin America and the Caribbean, and have over 80,000 volunteers working as part of their missions.
What is Stampify?
So what is Stampify and how do I get involved you might ask? Stampify is a social initiative that allows users to donate meals to help fight world hunger by completing a Stampify loyalty card with loyalty stamps from partner businesses. Stampify's goal is to work with businesses - whether it be coffee shops, restaurants, and other types of businesses - to create a sustainable solution to the world’s food poverty problem.
Stampify launched at the start of October in 5 coffee shops - Curious Monkey Coffee Company, Third Space Cafe, Dublin Barista School, Caracas Coffee House, and Noughtie Kitchen. Stampify has grown further in recent weeks, adding 6 new locations - 9th Degree Coffee Roasters, Bestseller Cafe, Provender and Family, Swifts Cafe Dublin and Arctic Stone, as well as Meltdown, the popular sandwich bar in Dublin’s Temple Bar. The social enterprise had 3 more businesses coming on board in January and is actively seeking new opportunities to expand.
Recently Stampify partnered with GreenAer, an electric bike company based in Dublin and Mullingar, to provide meals with every bike they sell. Any other businesses outside of the food/drink industry that would like to be involved are encouraged to reach out and discuss opportunities for partnership.
How It Works:
Stampify have created a loyalty card for charity that works as follows:
- Users pick up a Stampify loyalty card in any of our partner businesses
- They mix and match stamps from our partners to complete the card
- They return the completed card to any of our partners
- The restaurant makes a donation based on the number of stamps they have given out
Simple! For every completed card, a child will be fed for a week in their place of education in some of the world’s most deprived countries. The Stampify story is also an inspiring story for students soon to graduate. If the job you want isn't out there they why not create. Identify the problem and create a solution. Also, college classmates can make the best business partners.