Diocese of Joliet

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Food Fast Hunger Awareness Program

24 Hours That Last a Lifetime


Program Overview

A 24-hour experiential hunger awareness program, Food Fast challenge participants to help reduce world hunger and poverty through prayer, reflection and action. Food Fast calls participants to make an active commitment to their brothers and sisters around the world who are hungry and join in solidarity with other members of the human family.




Gain for Participants of Food Fast

Food Fast participants enhance their understanding about the root causes of hunger and its impact on people around the world. The experience of fasting in solidarity with the poor provides participants with first-hand knowledge of what it feels like to be hungry and raises awareness can raise the consciousness of others about the issue of hunger and things we can do to help.

Who Can Participate?

Food Fast is designed for youth in grades 8-12 and can be used in high schools, youth ministry, and religious education programs. College campuses and young adult groups can also adapt the materials for their use.

How Does Your Support of This Program Make a Difference?

Participation in Food Fast raises the awareness of community members and others by the example of the participants. Some groups collect canned foods during their fast to donate to a local food pantry. In addition, the money saved by not eating can be shared with those in need. Food Fast contributions sent to CRS are used for food security, hunger relief programs. 

Program History and Success

Food Fast was first developed in 1987. The program was revised in 1995 and has grown from 420 groups participating in that pilot year to over 1,200 groups in 1998. In preparation for the Jubilee and the Year of Charity 1999, the Pontifical Council Cor Unum selected Food Fast as one of the 100 Plus Projects of the Holy Father. These projects are chosen because they foster charity through solidarity, and promote development and progress that unites people of goodwill and highlights those in need. 

Can I Get More Information or Guidance About This Program?

Materials for this program include a detailed Coordinator's manual with a poster, checklist, activity instructions, and worksheets to use and prepare for your event. Buttons and prayer cards are available in bulk quantities for the participants. Call 1-800-222-0025 for your free materials.