Today I thought I would share my team’s Dine Below the Line lunch, but when you work for a busy charity it turns out that these things are difficult to organise. Only 4 of us were able to make it and even I turned up late after a meeting started late and ran late. We each brought our own portion of food, so it was less of a ‘Dine Below the Line’ experience and more of a lament the monotony of the food we’re eating and encourage each other to make it through the final 36 hours.
It was glorious to sit outside in the sun and enjoy my slightly spiced up meal of rice, chicken, frozen veg, ‘now with tomato pasta sauce!’. Apart from the pasta sauce this is the exact same meal I have consumed for lunch and supper for 3 consecutive days. I actually couldn’t finish all of my dinner, which I suspect has more to do with the gag reflex I’ve developed whenever I look at a bowl of white rice than the hunger I’m experiencing. But don’t worry! I certainly didn’t throw away the remaining food. The benefit of eating the same thing everyday is that it’s easy to add leftovers. Even though Jonathan and I have been eating the same breakfast that we have everyday, the bland hardboiled eggs (£0.14 each) are somehow less fulfilling as I know that nothing I eat throughout the day will make up for the lack of flavour. But they do give me the strength to walk to work at my usual pace.
The highlight of my day was when a fellow LBLer in the office ‘sold’ me a bag Asda crisps, which cost £0.05. I actually have £0.10 left in my daily total, so the crisps were a welcome change. I had to turn down lemon drizzle during our team tea time today, but I was able to indulge in this tiny treat. The crisps paired with the remaining half of my banana left me feeling strong as I started my walk home from work. But halfway through the walk I started to feel shaky and weak and had to slow my purposeful stride considerably.
For me, tomorrow is the last day where I willingly face these challenges. But there are 1.2 billion people in the world for whom the ‘challenge’ of extreme poverty is a daily reality. The challenge of extreme poverty is evident in some of the things I’ve experienced this week: fatigue, poor concentration, weakness, and a lack of choice. These are real challenges. Thankfully, we live in an exciting time in history; we live at a time where we have real solutions to these challenges.
I encourage you to Live Below the Line to gain insight into what extreme poverty feels like. Seriously! You have until the end of June to take the challenge and raise funds, so why not sign up? And you happen to know someone (me) who can offer advice and top tips and cheer you on for those tough, but rewarding 5 days.
I also encourage you to learn more about the exciting progress that is being made as millions are lifted out of extreme poverty. Why not sign up to become a Global Citizen? As a Global Citizen you will have access to videos, articles, and reports about ending extreme poverty within a generation and what each of us can do to make this vision a reality. As you read articles and share videos you gain points. With these points you can enter to win tickets to concerts from (I assume) your favourite bands. But more importantly you’ll learn more about the issues surrounding extreme poverty and help build the movement to see it end. To check it out and sign up please visit globalcitizen.org.
You can also sponsor me as I head into my final day of living below the line. livebelowtheline.com/me/leannehooper