I have made it to the end of day 1 of the Ration Challenge! I have found it very challenging and know that I am going to find it hard to make it to the end of the week, but I will, I have to, for myself, for all my supporters and most importantly for all the refugees and the amazing work of Concern Worldwide.
I planned my meals for the week but having read that congee is best eaten straight away I didn’t make it until this morning, well it took over an hour to make and what was supposed to taste like porridge tasted more like mushy watery rice but if I closed my eyes, I could try and imagine it was rice pudding (although that’s pushing it).
Last night I was lucky enough to have raised £150 which meant that I had earned 210ml of milk for the duration of the challenge and aside from feeling incredibly happy at this milestone (which I never imagined I would reach) I was so grateful that I would be able to have a cup of tea each morning. Despite having to make 3 tea bags last a week (1 for every 5 sponsors) I managed to have a cup of tea!
By 10.30am I was hungry and counting down the time to when I could eat lunch, hoping to feel fuller after eating lentil soup (which was cooked lentils and water) but I was shocked by how little the portion size was and it did not even fill one of my small bowls. Safe to say it did not hit the spot!
I still had my daughters to entertain and feed which I think made it more challenging as I was surrounded by nice food. I am so used to eating their leftovers and really struggled not being able to do this, mainly because I hate waste and this challenge is about refugees who have very little food, so it felt even worse to be throwing away perfectly good food (however little).
After going for a treasure hunt with my daughters through the woods I was feeling rather weak, but I knew there was nothing left to eat until teatime.
It got me wondering if refugees are used to eating such little amounts or if their lifestyles reflect how little they eat?
I know quite a few people who happily go all day without eating anything without it affecting them, but I am similar to a child in that I need feeding as soon as I wake up and then again at lunch and tea and quite often eat snacks in between. Without regular food I become hangry, so this challenge is definitely tough for me.
By far the best meal so far was flatbreads (flour and water) and hummus (cooked chickpeas and water, blitzed) as it felt more satisfying although I could not believe how long it took to make the hummus.
It has certainly felt as though most of the day has been taken up with cooking only to be left with small portions of very plain and unfulfilling food. Refugees must be constantly cooking.
My four year old daughter said that the money I raise will mean that everyone will have enough food to eat and that they will be able to eat whatever they like. If only this were true!
However, even if I cannot provide enough food to feed every refugee, I am incredibly touched by everyone who has sponsored me so far. When I signed up for this challenge, I never thought I would raise more than £50 let alone £150 which meant I earned 210ml of milk. However, as it stands, I have now raised £271!!! This means that I have now earned 170g of a vegetable of my choice so I will be able to add an onion to my recipes from now on!
This means that I have raised enough money to provide a refugee woman with the training she needs to start her own business or enough money to provide a refugee with a year’s worth of food rations.
Thank you once again to everyone who has donated, I cannot tell you how much it means to me!