The hard hitting documentary, Child 31, to be broadcast at 22.35pm has been produced by award-winning New York based production company Grassroots Films.
Friday 15th March will be the first time Child 31 has been broadcast on a UK commercial channel.
Following founder Magnus MacFarlane-Barrow, Child 31 offers a glimpse into the charity’s simple, yet groundbreaking, approach to feeding the world’s poorest children.
By providing one good meal to a hungry child in a place of education, Mary’s Meals addresses that child’s immediate need for food and provides them with the energy and opportunity to learn, which can be their escape route out of poverty in later life.
Child 31 includes a look at the life of Lette Siheed in Malawi. At 12 years old, Lette is the head of the household and cares for her brothers Michael (10) and Andersen (4). They have rented out their own little hut, and while they live in a one room annex, the money from the tenant helps them to survive. Lette cries as she speaks about the loss of her mother two years ago, her father having passed away some years before. She tells us that sometimes the hunger gives her stomach pains and makes her feel like vomiting. Lette says that when she feels this way, she always thinks back to how, when her mother was alive, she never went hungry. “But it isn’t hard to look after my brothers,” she says, trying to smile.
Elizabeth Partyka, deputy director of channels at STV, said: “Child 31 is a compelling documentary from a charity with very strong Scottish roots that is having an impact on a global scale. Figures from Mary’s Meals show that approximately 18,000 children die every day due to hunger-related diseases. On a night when lots of us will be thinking about children at risk all over the world, STV is keen to help shine a light on the issues of child poverty, wherever they occur.”
Mary’s Meals founder Magnus MacFarlane-Barrow said: “Child 31 is told through the eyes of children - the children whose lives have been transformed by receiving Mary's Meals and the children who raise vital funds on their behalf.
"There are people from all walks of life who will not accept that any child in this world of plenty must endure a day without food.
"It is thanks to their efforts that thousands of children, who would otherwise be hungry and working for their next meal, are instead sitting in a classroom with a full stomach, learning how to read and write."
For further information about Mary’s Meals visit http://www.marysmeals.org.uk/
For further information about Child 31 visit http://www.whoischild31.com/
For further information, please contact the STV press office:-
0141 300 3670 / 07803 970 143
0141 300 3830 / 07921 494 654