What we do

We combat hunger

For close to a billion people around the world, hunger is a real, terrible, and ever-present fate that hounds their every step. According to the World Food Program, each year ten million people, many of them children, die of hunger and hunger-related diseases.  Each day over a hundred million people wonder where their next meal will come from.  Because it is so commonplace, chronic hunger seldom makes the headlines, seldom whips up massive waves of public sympathy.  Its victims suffer in silence, almost forgotten by those with assured livelihoods and comfortably filled stomachs.

The Buddha, however, clearly recognized the frightful toll that hunger takes on human life.  In the Dhammapada, he said “Hunger is the worst illness.” When people go hungry each day, for months and years on end, every aspect of their life is degraded.  The body loses mass and withers away; the pangs of hunger remain constant; one thinks only about food, dreams only about food.  And the ultimate prognosis for chronic hunger is grim: debilitating illness, perhaps an early death.

It is in response to the cries of those afflicted with chronic hunger that Buddhist Global Relief came into being, and it is to redress this condition that its programs are formulated.  Our primary purpose is to combat hunger.  We address our efforts both to assist victims of sudden disaster who need emergency food aid, and to enable those crippled by chronic food shortages to develop stable, long-term strategies of improved food security.  Our endeavor is to ensure that the world’s poorest people are provided with adequate nutrition, and provided with it long into the future.  Our hope is that, when their nutritional needs are met, they will be able to unfold and actualize their fullest potential for goodness and meaning in their lives.

“In giving food, one gives five things to the recipients: one gives life, beauty, happiness, strength, and mental clarity.  In giving these five things, one in turn partakes of life, beauty, happiness, strength, and mental clarity, whether in this world or in the heavenly realm.”
- Anguttara Nikaya 5:37

Our programs

  • BGR addresses hunger and poverty. BGR sponsors projects that provide food relief and poverty alleviation both in the developing world and in the U.S. We raise funds from both private donors and philanthropic organizations and work in partnership with agencies, institutions, and relief organizations already operating on the ground in the communities that our projects serve. We closely screen proposals for projects from prospective partners and collaborate with organizations that have established a track record of effectiveness and responsibility. We receive full reports about the projects we sponsor and share the results with our supporters on our website and in our newsletter and annual reports.
  • Our emphasis. BGR is not an emergency relief organization. While we provide occasional emergency contributions to help peoples stricken by disaster, our emphasis is on fostering better long-term methods of sustainable food production and distribution designed to ensure its beneficiaries a constant supply of healthy and nutritious food.
  • Food sovereignty. BGR seeks to promote food sovereignty rather than food dependency. The concept of food sovereignty is based on the principle that “everyone must have access to safe, nutritious, and culturally appropriate food in sufficient quantity and quality to sustain a healthy life with full human dignity” (see www.viacampesina.org). Our projects are intended to enable our beneficiaries to develop projects that they themselves can implement and manage for the benefit of their own communities.
  • Tackling the roots. BGR also seeks to address the root causes of poverty and malnutrition. In many traditional cultures one of the most persistent of these causes is the subordinate status of girls and women. For this reason, our projects offer food aid to needy families as an incentive to keep their girls in school. We also sponsor training and right livelihood opportunities for adult women, enabling them to earn more for their families.
  • BGR does not proselytize. Our guiding purpose is to provide aid, not to convert others to Buddhism.  BGR respects the religious beliefs and practices of the people it serves and seeks to work in harmony with those of all faiths to alleviate the plight of the poor.

Raising awareness

Through our website, newsletter, Facebook page, and blog, we seek to raise awareness among Buddhists about the extent of world hunger and to mobilize action that promotes social justice on food-related issues, including climate change, one of the chief threats to the world’s food systems. Past issues of the newsletter are available on our website. Please like our Facebook page and subscribe to our blog at http://buddhistglobalrelief.wordpress.com/.

Our Projects

BGR projects are designed to provide direct food aid to people afflicted by hunger and malnutrition, to promote ecologically sustainable agriculture, to support the education of girls and women, and to give women an opportunity to start right livelihood projects to support their families.


Bangladesh

FOOD SUPPORT FOR SCHOOL OF ORPHANS
Provide food supplies for 54 orphans for 12 months at The Orphan's Home in the rural Cittagong Hills region. »



 Bangladesh

EDUCATING ETHNIC MINORITY GIRLS
Provide Food Support for 106 ethnic Buddhist minority Girls at Yashodara Girl's School in Chttagong Hill Tracts. »  


Bangladesh

PERMANENT DORMITORY FOR BOY STUDENTS
Provide a permanent dormitory for 120 boys in the Chittagong Hill Tracts, a poor area affected by conflict. » 

Burma (via Thailand)

EDUCATION FOR CHILDREN OF BACKPACK MEDICS
Support education for children of backpack health workers serving displaced Burmese villagers, students and refugees. »  

Cambodia

FOOD SCHOLARSHIPS FOR GIRLS TO STAY IN SCHOOL 
Support life-transforming Girls Access To Education (GATE) program ensuring girls stay in school. »

Cambodia

CATALYZING THE POTENTIAL OF GIRLS AT THE MARGIN
Provide scholarships and related assistance for young women in nursing and other schools. » 

Cambodia

RICE INTENSIFICATION AND TRAINING IN AGRO-ECOLOGY
Engage farmers in rice intensification program, cash crop cultivation, and other related programs. » 

Cameroon

JOB TRAINING FOR SINGLE MOTHERS
Provide practical vocational training for marginalized women and for single and teenage mothers. » 

Cameroon

A FOOD PROGRAM FOR POOR CHILDREN
Provide meals at school for over 95 poor and needy children in Ebase village. » 

Cote d'Ivoire

IMPROVED NUTRITION AMONG CHILDREN AND PREGNANT WOMEN
Decrease incidence of malnutrition in children especially in the first 1,000 days of life. » 

Haiti

SCHOOL FEEDING PROGRAM IN JACMEL
Provide at least one meal per day, six days a week for students, c. 360 meals per week. » 

Haiti

IMPROVED CROP PRODUCTION AND DIVERSIFICATION
Improve rice production & backyard vegetable gardening in recently flooded Artibonite Valley. »

Haiti

MEALS FOR HUNGRY KIDS IN PORT-AU-PRINCE
Provide between 500 and 750 life-sustaining meals to children every weekday in the Ti Plas Kazo Community. » 

Haiti

A SCHOOL FOR CHILDREN IN PORT-AU-PRINCE
Support for teacher's salaries, supplies, water, & computers for school providing quality education. » 

Haiti

SUPPORTING THE NUTRITION OF POOR CHILDREN
Help to give impoverished children two healthy meals daily, and support training workshops. » 

India

GIRL'S HOME AND WOMEN'S SOCIAL SERVICE CENTER
Sponsor education for 30 teenage girls in danger of not finishing school due to poverty. » 

India

PROSPERITY THROUGH RESILIENT AGRICULTURE
Improve resilience and income for smallholder farmers, especially women, in Uttar Pradesh. » 

India

NUTRITIONAL SUPPORT FOR GARDEN OF PEACE SCHOOL
Provide uniforms, books, transportation and food for students at Garden of Peace school. » 

Jamaica & Haiti

NUTRITIOUS MORNING MEALS FOR YOUNG CHILDREN
Provide nutritious morning meals for children prepared by local small businesses. » 

Kenya

IMPROVING MATERNAL AND CHILD HEALTH AND NUTRITION
Support proven programs that reach mothers, infants and children in need of food. » 

Kenya & Malawi

SUSTAINABLE MINI FARMING 
Training, especially for women, in biointensive farming to increase food production. » 

Nicaragua

EDUCATIONAL SPONSORSHIP OF GIRLS
Provide tuition, books, uniform with insignia and shoes, and some medical screening and treatment. » 

Sri Lanka

COMPUTER SKILLS FOR LOW INCOME GIRLS
Provide access to computer technology skills development for 60 girls from low-income families. » 

Sudan

HELPING FARMERS IN DARFUR
Address critical food insecurity with training and supplies for improved farming techniques. » 

U.S. Detroit, MI

URBAN FARMING IN DETROIT
Provide aid to 1500 urban gardens, including 400 new ones in 2017. Help sponsor 22 events . »

Vietnam

ENHANCED HOMESTEAD FOOD PRODUCTION
Train mulit-generational families to increase year-round food production improving nutrition. »

Vietnam

SYSTEM OF RICE INTENSIFICATION IN DAI TU DISTRICT
Introduce SRI to farmers to lower work burden and increase food production . »

Vietnam

MEALS FOR HOSPITAL PATIENTS IN TAM BINH HOSPITAL
Help to provide 500 vegetarian meals daily to hospital patients, total 182,000 meals per year. »

Vietnam

SCHOLARSHIPS FOR POOR CHILDREN in TAM BINH & CAM DUONG DISTRICTS
Help with fees, uniforms, books, and healthcare for over 400 K-12 students. »