JCU Delegation Participates in World Food Forum

A delegation of five JCU students participated in the World Food Forum (WFF) flagship event organized by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) from October 17 to October 21, 2022. The event took place at the headquarters of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations in Rome.

World Food Forum

World Food Forum

Launched in 2021 and facilitated by FAO, the WFF is an independent, youth-led global network of partners that aims at identifying actionable solutions to minimize the impact of climate change and increase global access to nutritious diets. The forum brought together youth groups, influencers, companies, academic institutions, nonprofits, and governments. JCU was selected by the WFF as a diverse academic institution committed to educating future leaders while fostering inclusivity and participation. The WFF promoted discussions with relevant stakeholders including young people, farmers, small-scale producers, indigenous people, and policymakers with the common goal of advancing food security to ensure its availability to all.

The five students were selected based on their interest in shaping the future of international governance of agrifood systems through youth engagement.

The students were: Ana Aviles Ramirez, an International Affairs and Marketing double major from Honduras; Betselot Dejene, an International Affairs major from Ethiopia; Donnatella Bove Parra, an Italian-Venezuelan double major in International Affairs, and Economics and Finance; Ellie Branson, a Dominican-American double major in International Affairs and Economics and Finance; and Liliana Ferreri, an International Affairs major from Italy.

This year’s WFF theme was “Healthy Diets. Healthy Planet.” Challenges such as the COVID-19 pandemic, the war in Ukraine, and climate change have hindered the access and availability of food for millions of people around the world.

“My mission was to advocate for an actionable food policy to mitigate the consequences of the political, economic, social, and humanitarian crisis in Venezuela,” said Donnatella Bove Parra. During the Latin America and Caribbean roundtable, she spoke about the challenges that the Venezuelan population is facing, such as poverty, hunger, and diseases. “The WFF was extremely eye-opening because it made me realize how much more I can learn about this topic, and it allowed me to connect with people whom I would not have met otherwise,” added Liliana Ferreri.

The students’ participation in the WFF counted towards the experiential component of the Certificate in Sustainability and as a classroom experience for the Community Service Certificate.