THE Bishop of Reading was one of hundreds of people who marked Christian Aid Week by surviving on a diet of lentils and rice.
He was taking part in the global initiative Live Below the Line, which challenged people across the UK to think differently about poverty by paying only £5 for all their food and drink over five days, to raise awareness of the 1.4 billion people in the world living in extreme poverty.As part of his diet, The Rt Revd Andrew Proud cooked dhal and was pleased to take part to raise awareness of global poverty.He said: “It is scandalous that more than 1.4 billion people in our world today are living in extreme poverty and do not have enough money to feed themselves or their families. £1 is the equivalent amount that people in some of the poorest parts of the world have to live on every day to meet all of their needs.“Live Below the Line is a way of raising awareness of global poverty, while also raising money to support the invaluable work that organisations like Christian Aid do to try to end extreme poverty.” Amy Merone, who works for Christian Aid’s Oxford office, took part in the challenge last year.She said: “A couple of months after taking part in Live Below the Line I was in Kenya visiting the work of Christian Aid partner organisations. “While I was there I met a young girl called Jackline who was 15. She was caring for five siblings and cousins, surviving on the equivalent of 15p a day by washing out plastic carrier bags to be resold.“Jackline couldn’t go to school because her priority was to make enough money each day so that the children could eat. She spoke about what it felt like for them to go to bed at night hungry. “That there are 1.4 billion people in the world like Jackline and her siblings experiencing extreme poverty and hunger is an injustice.”Last year more than 10,000 people took part in Live below the Line, raising more than £1 million for charities, including Christian Aid. Live Below the Line is a campaign run by the Global Poverty Project and Christian Aid will be raising money for its work with poor communities in almost 50 developing countries.
v For more on the Live Below the Line project, log on to www.livebelowtheline.com/uk-christianaid.