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As world leaders gather in New York to attend the 74th Session of the United Nations General Assembly, millions of people around the world are mobilizing to demand change for climate justice. To accelerate global commitment to climate action, UN Secretary-General António Guterres is convening a Climate Action Summit in New York City on September 23.

This is an issue of direct concern to Helen Keller International. Our teams work with vulnerable communities across Africa and Asia that are on the front lines of climate shocks. These communities, and our staff who work with them, are witnessing floods, droughts, erratic weather patterns, damaged crops, disrupted health services, and violent conflict driven by climate change.

In August of this year, a stark new report from the United Nations warned that the world’s land and water resources—and therefore, its food supply—face an unprecedented threat from degradation, desertification, extreme weather events, and global warming.

We urge world leaders to take action to reduce carbon emissions. To reiterate the need to invest in affected communities and in tangible, local solutions to protect against the effects of climate change, we are reposting a statement from our CEO, Kathy Spahn.

In the words of our co-founder, Helen Keller, “Science may have found a cure for most evils; but it has found no remedy for the worst of them all — the apathy of human beings.”1 None of us can afford to be bystanders. The time is now to take action, protect the planet that sustains us, and prevent a future without food.

“The Changing Climate for Zero Hunger”: statement from Helen Keller International CEO, Kathy Spahn

 1 The Open Door: A Sense of Life, Selections From the Writings of Helen Keller. Doubleday, New York, 1957. American Foundation for the Blind archive.