"Thirty thousand people die of hunger-related diseases every day," said Mannix, the past Rotary District 7710 governor, who spoke at Monday's Augusta Rotary Club meeting at Enterprise Mill to highlight a project local clubs are planning to fight hunger.
Mannix showed several photographs, including a chilling picture of a young child in Sudan. A French photographer captured the child, emaciated and hunched over the parched land scratching for something to eat. A vulture sat with its eyes fixed on the child.
From 9 a.m. to noon Sept. 11, Augustans will work with Stop Hunger Now to provide 40,000 meals for people in Haiti. Members of several area Rotary Clubs, Augusta State University Rotaract Club and volunteers will package food at Augusta State University's Christenberry Fieldhouse to be shipped to Haiti. The Augusta Chronicle, the Augusta State University Alumni Association and Augusta State University Student Activities are sponsors.
Stop Hunger Now is a North Carolina-based organization with a mission of eliminating world hunger. For $1.50, a plastic bag with rice, soy, dehydrated vegetables and a vitamin mix can provide six meals, the organization says.
Stop Hunger Now will supply the food and materials needed, Mannix said. The community provides the money and volunteers.
There will also be a canned food drive that morning for Golden Harvest Food Bank. Shepeard Community Blood Center will have an information table.
Mannix said the clubs in his North Carolina district have been helping Stop Hunger Now since 2005, and he's been to Haiti to see the food distributed to children in orphanages and schools.
"We put meals in schools because parents will send their kids to school to get at least one meal," he said.