BRUNSWICK — Wars and natural disasters dominate the world’s daily headlines, but behind the scenes and far from the spotlight, hunger and preventable diseases claim the lives of 24,000 of the world’s children every day. More than 1 billion people go hungry every day — about one in seven of all people living on this planet, according to statistics from World Vision.

“Why so many? For some families, the only food they have is whatever they can grow themselves,” states a release from St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in Brunswick. “ One drought or flood can wipe out a year’s harvest. When it does, there’s no supermarket or food bank they can turn to. Others can barely afford food despite their best efforts. But world hunger is 100 percent preventable, and teens from St. Paul’s Episcopal Church are ready to help.”

This will be the fifth year that teens from St. Paul’s have taken part in the 30 Hour Famine, but they won’t be alone. They will be joined by the youth of All Saints Catholic Parish in Brunswick as well as friends from other Episcopal parishes in Maine.

On March 30 and 31, the teens will be joining the efforts of hundreds of thousands of young people all over the nation who will set aside the usual “stuff ” that fills their daily lives. Instead, they will fast as part of World Vision’s 30 Hour Famine. By going without food, they get a taste of what the world’s poorest children and families face every day. Prior to the event weekend, students raise funds with the knowledge that every $30 they raise can help feed and care for a child for a month.

Groups also perform handson service projects during the weekend in order to make a difference in their own communities. Here in Brunswick, local participants will take part in a food drive and prepare a meal at Mid- Coast Hunger Prevention Program while they are fasting.

Students in grades 6 to 12 who are interested in taking part in the 30 Hour Famine at St. Paul’s can contact Kristin Agudelo, director of Christian education. For more information, visit

Funds raised by 30 Hour Famine participants help feed and care for children in communities in need around the globe through World Vision. A portion of the funds raised assist families in need in the United States, the release states. Since 1992, 30 Hour Famine has raised close to $140 million.

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