freerice.jpgYou gotta try the new Internet game in which you choose the correct definition of a word — the words keep getting harder, which makes it really fun — and for every correct choice you make, a hungry person is fed. The website,, donates 10 grains of rice to the UN World Food Program (WFP) every time you get one right. Today, brainy gamers are set to pass the 5 billion grain mark after just seven weeks of operations. That is enough to feed more than 250,000 people for one day! was founded on October 7 by American fundraising pioneer John Breen, and relies on payments from companies that place advertisements on the site to underwrite its donations to WFP. On Wednesday the vocabulary charity decided to raise their donation to 20 grains of rice per correct answer.

On the first day of the site’s operations, only 830 grains were donated. But with the help of bloggers and social networking sites such as YouTube and Facebook, the numbers have grown exponentially, and yesterday more than 383 million grains – or the equivalent of 16.9 million clicks – was donated.

WFP Executive Director Josette Sheeran hailed the FreeRice game as an example of how the Internet can mobilize millions of people worldwide to end want.

“Every grain of rice is essential in the fight against hunger,” she said, noting that hunger claims more lives than AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria combined.

“FreeRice really hits how the Web can be harnessed to raise awareness and funds for the world’s number one emergency,” said the WFP chief, praising the site’s marketing success.

And, bookmark it!

Thanks to Bill F. for sending the link to GNN-i!


  1. This game is SO much fun!!! Addicting. I had to stop myself to get some work done. You can easily go on and on and on. Just by playing I donated 3820 grains of rice. Try it! You get some “brain food” by playing, and it’s a great cause.

  2. I know… It is addicting!
    I tried to get my vocabulary level to go over 40 but couldn’t do it. I had to pull myself away.

    I told my 12 yr-old daughter to tell all her myspace friends about it. She was addicted too!

    She knew words I didn’t know, from her viewing of animal planet (a carapus is an animal shell!) and, playing video games with weapons in them (a halberd is a battalax! — don’t put me in a spelling bee, tho)

    Our family considers all recreation as very educational… and there is the proof.

    I asked a young boy about 9 what the fruit was he was holding in the grocery store. He said it was a coconut. I was totally amazed as I’d never known them to be small and green. I thanked him for his knowledge and he walked away telling his sister he’d learned it on MAN VS WILD (a TV show).

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