I first became acquainted with the Heifer Project through VBS. The education committee had chosen to send the daily offering to Heifer International. I remember the joy of a young boy as he brought $5 as his offering. He entered the church saying, “I got chickens. I got chickens.” For every dollar given, the children got to color a paper chicken and help someone in need.
Heifer International turns 75 this year. The first delivery of cattle went to Castaner, Puerto Rico in 1944. In the beginning, farmers from the United States donated the animals, seeds and training for those in poverty all over the world to become self-sustaining.
In the ensuing years, 12 Cornerstones for Just and Sustainable Development were implemented.
- Passing on the gift
- Sharing and caring
- Sustainability and self-reliance
- Improved animal resource management
- Nutrition and income
- Gender and family focus
- Genuine need and justice
- Improving the environment
- Full participation
- Training, education and communication
Over the years, these guidelines have driven the Heifer International program, and the stories of how this ministry has helped people (mostly women) grow their own cattle, sheep, chickens, trees, bees and so much more, continue to amaze me. Lives of families have been changed. Those living in wood shacks now have floored houses; those who had so little to eat now eat regular meals; those with very little income now have monthly income; children who could not go to school now attend school and even further their education.
Through your generous donations to Heifer International, lives are changing. As we continue to support this
organization, maybe there will be 100 years or more celebrations for this ministry.
-Carol Hendrich, Treasurer