Members of a national federation of rural women organizations held a protest march along Elliptical Road, Quezon City on October 16, 2023, to commemorate Philippine Rural Women’s Day and World Food Day.
They called on the government to address issues related to the food crisis and food security.
The protesters, representing the Pambansang Koalisyon ng Kababaihan sa Kanayunan (PKKK, National Rural Women Federation), spearheaded the march and conducted short programs in front of the offices of the Philippine Coconut Authority and the departments of Agrarian Reform, Environment and Natural Resources, and Agriculture.
They strongly condemned the allocation of “confidential funds while farmers face attacks and a lack of support.”
In a symbolic gesture, they carried scarecrows designed to deter those who exploit farmers’ land and rights.
On Monday, Pope Francis urged the public to “leave no one behind” in the global fight against poverty, hunger, and the lack of access to clean water.
In his 2023 World Food Day message, the pontiff emphasized that the world is grappling with a harsh reality characterized by poverty and despair, with countless individuals experiencing hunger and malnutrition.
“The cries of anguish and despair from the poor should shake us from our complacency and appeal to our consciences,” the pope conveyed in his message to the Director General of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO).
Pope Francis stressed that these conditions of suffering are the direct consequence of an unjust accumulation of inequalities and injustices that have marginalized many within society.
The pontiff referred to this situation as a direct affront to the God-given human dignity of all individuals. “It is indeed an insult that should provoke shame throughout humanity and galvanize the international community,” he remarked.
All photos by Jimmy Domingo