07/20/2009 05:12 am ET | Updated Nov 17, 2011

How The Internet Could Feed The Hungry

For the first time in history, there are more than a billion hungry people in the world. That's almost a sixth of the world's population.

A billion people go to sleep hungry every night. There are also more than a billion people today fortunate enough to have access to the internet. You are one of them.

So what would happen if the online billion turned their attention to service, and united their efforts to help the hungry billion? I think a great deal could happen.

We are more socially aware now than we've ever been and we have many new ways to serve. Social networks have given the everyday Joe the power to mobilize and inspire vast numbers of people in a very short time.

While service still means spending a year in a poor African country or working two nights a week in a soup kitchen, or even setting up fund-raising committees, the internet has opened up a whole world of possibilities for those who wish to help. Traditionally, service meant a few people did a lot. The web has redefined service, by allowing many people to do a little. Service has gone on-line. And the impact could be dramatic.

Here are some ideas to start with:

• Tweet the simple fact that there are more than a billion hungry in the world
• Donate $5, in three clicks, to save a baby from malnutrition
• Voice your opinions on Facebook

If you want to join WFP's fight against hunger, and start serving online, check out this page (

Online service counts. We'll appreciate it, and so will a billion other people.