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This Friday, October 16 is World Food Day. Join organizations, leaders, and people from around the globe as they come together to take action against world hunger. This year’s theme will be “Social Protection and Agriculture: Breaking the Cycle of Rural Poverty.”

 This year’s focus on rural poverty hopes to bring attention to agricultural food production in struggling areas and to stimulate national efforts to help. Bringing forth new technologies and achievements in food production, especially to rural people and the least privileged, will help raise incomes, improve food security and benefit the environment. At edX, we applaud World Food Day’s mission to bring awareness to these important issues, and we offer courses to help learners around the globe advance their knowledge about food, nutrition and world hunger.

The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization estimates about 805 million people worldwide suffered from chronic undernourishment in 2012-2014, which means roughly one in nine people did not have enough to eat. As of today, about one billion people live in extreme poverty, with 78% living in rural areas where agriculture is the main driving force of the rural, and in some cases, whole economy.

World Food Day will also direct attention to social protection programs, which are a blend of policies, programs and interventions that aim at protecting poor and food-insecure people and lifting them out of poverty and hunger. These types of programs help to enhance people’s lives, specifically their right to education. Access to education is a powerful tool in the fight against poverty and hunger. EdX offers free online courses to everyone, everywhere. We celebrate the efforts of these social programs, which align with the edX mission to increase access to high-quality education.

Although the world has seen a decrease in the percentage of malnourished people in the last 15 years, there is more to be done. As Ban Ki-Moon, the Secretary-General of the United Nations says, “In a world of plenty, no one, not a single person, should go hungry.”

Enroll in edX’s food & nutrition courses, learn about the social impact of food, how we can feed the world, and how nutrition is vital to our health. This World Food Day, feed your mind and take part in the global conversation of world hunger. #WFD2015

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