BOSTON, USA — Rakuten Viber, one of the world’s leading apps for free and easy communication, announces the launch of its campaign to raise funds for organizations fighting global hunger in the wake of widespread COVID-19-induced food shortages. With a brand new sticker pack and community dedicated to the cause, Viber’s campaign will engage the company’s users and employees, as well as donate the proceeds to development partners such as the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC), World Wide Fund (for Nature) (WWF), UNICEF, U-report, and U.N. Migration.
COVID-19 has disrupted nearly every institution and industry, including the food supply chains necessary to sustaining human life. At least 265 million people are at risk of going hungry in 2020, according to an estimate made by the U.N. World Food Programme (WFP) in April. That’s nearly twice as many as last year. Reversing the downward trend means literally saving lives, and Viber is positioning itself to take part in doing so.
The initiative includes an educational “Fight World Hunger Together” Viber-owned community as well as a Viber sticker pack in English and Russian. The first-of-its-kind community will inform users on how changing habits, such as eating, shopping, and cooking, can reduce food waste and can help vulnerable people have more stable access to food, on top of learning more about the hunger crisis. The content will be managed by Viber’s humanitarian partners, who have their own channels on the platform, too. Moreover, people can support the cause also financially by downloading the dedicated to the campaign sticker pack — the profit from which will be donated to charities which battle food hunger. On top of that, Viber is giving an option for people who do not have the availability to donate now, to support by joining the newly created community and inviting family and friends. When the community reaches 1 million users, Viber will donate $10,000 towards the cause, encouraging individuals to show their personal example which is essential for the topic.
“The world is changing more rapidly than ever, and COVID-19 is making vulnerable populations even more vulnerable. One of the biggest challenges the pandemic presents is global food shortages and growing hunger, and Viber can’t sit idly by and do nothing about it,” said Djamel Agaoua, CEO of Rakuten Viber.