Ben Affleck is super rich and important with a luxurious beard, but for a staggering 5 days, Mr. Affleck is going to live on only $1.50 a day. It’s part of a social awareness campaign. From TIME Magazine:
Live Below the Line bills itself as “a campaign that’s challenging the way people in the U.S. think about poverty — and making a huge difference.” The group’s Facebook page recently announced that Ben Affleck would be participating in this year’s Live Below the Line challenge, which requires participants to feed themselves on no more than $1.50 per day for five days next week, from April 29 to May 3.
The purpose of the challenge is to open eyes up to the reality that 1.4 billion of our fellow human beings on earth live below the extreme poverty line, currently estimated by the World Bank to be the equivalent of roughly $1.50 per day in the U.S.
Last year, more than 15,000 people participated in the challenge, raising over $3 million in the process. More than 20,000 people are expected to participate this year, and Affleck is not the only celebrity on board.
Josh Groban is also doing this, and for his second year. He says the first time he did it, it was so inspiring that he wrote a song about the whole thing:
I wanted to capture this in “Below the Line”, which was inspired by this experience. It’s amazing how much we take for granted not having to live in hunger, and I am honored to have been asked to help spread the word about this eye-opening campaign again this year.
Good for you, buddy.
Here are the rules:
Your total five-day food bill shouldn’t go over $7.50, and you’re not supposed to rummage through the pantry for snacks, unless you factor how much the items cost into your total. Drinking lots of tap water is advised, and there’s no need to calculate how much it costs or add that into your budget.
Produce from your backyard garden is fair game, though complicated: “You can use food sourced from your garden as long as you can account for the price of production!”
So if someone asks, “Hey, Ben, can we grab you a latte?” can he say yes? Does he have to decline every offer for anything? Does he have to give up his assistant for those 5 days? What about the Internet? Does he have to factor in the cost of the monthly cable bill for 5 days? Is he just going to chill out and do nothing for those 5 days? And how does any of this raise money? I am so confused. Clearly.