- Fome Zero
Bonomeets Brazilian President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva. He donated a guitar to the Fome Zero program.] Fome Zero (Portuguese for "Zero Hunger") is a Brazilian government program introduced by the president Luiz Inácio Lula da Silvain 2003with the objective to eradicate hungerand extreme povertyin Brazil. According to the program's website, 44 million people in Brazil are threatened by hunger.
Contents of the program
The program is co-ordinated by the Ministério do Desenvolvimento Social e Combate à Fome (or Ministry of Social Development and Fight against Hunger) and consists in a government strategy to guarantee the right of access to basic food. The program ranges from giving direct financial aid to the poorest families; to many diverse areas, such as creating
cisternsin Brazil's semi-arid climate, creating popular restaurants with low prices, educating about healthy eating habits, distributing vitamins and iron suplements, supporting family farming, giving access to credit by microcredit, and a few other programs.
"Fome Zero" is the biggest initiative from the Brazilian government to combat hunger in the history of the country, but similar assistance programs have been implemented by previous governments.
In 2003, David de Ferranti, [http://lnweb18.worldbank.org/External/lac/lac.nsf/0/237BE2B1B975FD4985256B1F005334E7?OpenDocument BIRD] ] who is the IBRD representative for Latin America and the Caribbean also criticised the program, [http://www1.folha.uol.com.br/folha/brasil/ult96u47524.shtml "Governo recebe novas críticas aos principais pontos do Fome Zero" - Folha Online (
March 31, 2003)] ] due to its absence of a clear focus, as the program did not combat the country's poverty and income inequality. He also criticised the money donation and the food gathering and distribution.
Fome Zero is considered by the opposition (mostly the PSDB and PFL parties) as a failure, due to the government's inability to manage the program. Murilo Zauith, a PFL federal deputy, in March 2005, said the program was faulty, citing the death of several indigenous children due to malnutrition in the city of Dourados,
Mato Grosso do Sul, as an example. However, Humberto Costa, the Minister of Health at the time, considered the death count average and not alarming. [http://www.correiodoestado.com.br/exibir.asp?chave=97363,1,8,11-03-2005 "Murilo Zauith considera Fome Zero programa fracassado" - Correio do Estado ( March 11, 2005] )]
*pt icon [http://www.fomezero.gov.br/ Fome Zero Official Website]
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