How Food For The Hungry Uses Music To Give Back

The nonprofit that works to eradicate poverty around the world is partnering with some of today's most popular Christian music artists to spread an inspiring message. 

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Posted in , Jun 23, 2016

Food for the Hungry

Six years ago, Daniel White hit a road block in his life.

After 18 years in the entertainment industry, White had done everything, from being a tour manager for country artists to working at large recording companies and radio stations. He loved his job, his home and his family, but he started to realize his priorities just weren’t in line.

“My barometer was getting off and it became more about me, me, me. How can I make more money?” White tells Guideposts.org.

That’s when he received a phone call from the nonprofit organization Food for the Hungry that would change his life                                                         

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Founded in 1971, Food for the Hungry works to eradicate poverty around the globe by traveling to remote places in order to meet specific needs -- addressing climate change in the Philippines, aiding refugees in Syria and creating food security in Ethiopia are just a few of their current projects.

Food for the Hungry called White to ask if he would be interested in using his years of experience in the music business to help foster relationships between the nonprofit and those big-name artists. TobyMac to Christian rap artist Lecrae, and Christian rock group Third Day all have relationships with the nonprofit and feature the organization’s booths at their concerts. During intermissions, these artists have speakers from Food for the Hungry share stories of the incredible work they’re doing. It was an opportunity he just couldn’t pass up. He now serves as the organization’s Director of Artist & Speaker Relations.

“I feel like what we’re doing and how we’re doing it is setting a legacy for generations and generations to come,” White says. “I mean how amazing is that to be a part of something that is really changing the world one community at a time?”

White remembers a trip he took to the Philippines with the Christian rock group Hawk Nelson. Food for the Hungry had been partnering with the band on tour stops and invited the guys to see how they were helping the organization improve water quality and sanitation in the area following the devastating effects of a typhoon.

“I remember taking Hawk Nelson to the Philippines several years back and hearing one of the guys say, ‘I’ll never be the same after this trip.’” White says. “When you get to walk with these artists in this valley they would never be able to walk through otherwise and meet the people they’re impacting firsthand, I’m still humbled that I get to do that.”

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He hopes that by partnering with artists like Lecrae and TobyMac, a new generation might learn of the good work Food for the Hungry is currently trying to do.

“Christian artists have an incredible platform, an incredible message through songs and through the lifestyle that they’re leading,” White explains. “But I don’t know one artist that has come to us for partnership, to raise funds or awareness for what we do, that didn’t say ‘We don’t want to just stop at the platform – we want our legacy what God has called us to do to be more and bigger than us.’”

That sense of community and bigger-picture planning is what White loves about his work with Food for the Hungry.

“It’s an overarching, holistic approach that helps fund an entire community,” White says. “It’s a way for us to look way down the road and make strong, honorable commitments to work financially with a community; it helps us sustain the work that we do for a longer term versus a onetime gift or project.”

“Right now we know our call; we want to work with the most vulnerable,” White says.

It's a lesson White is passing onto his two sons. His family currently sponsors a young boy in Kenya through the organization’s Sponsor a Child program. 

“If you look five, ten years down the road, what the program does to your own children and how it embeds [in them the ability] to think beyond themselves and think of others, it just becomes a way of life that I think is incredible.”

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