Hear how Heifer is making a difference

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – Heifer International invites the public to join staff and others to hear an update on its East Africa Dairy Development (EADD) project at a brown bag lunch Wednesday, March 24. The presentation will be from noon to 1:30 p.m., at Heifer Village, on the organization’s campus at 1 World Avenue, in downtown Little Rock.

The EADD is a partnership project between Heifer, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, TechnoServe and the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI). Announced at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, in 2008, the project’s goal is to help 179,000 families—one million people—mostly poor rural farmers in Africa out of poverty by improving production and market-access drivers of farmer income.

Presenting at the brown bag lunch will be Simiyu Gaitano, EADD’s regional director for planning, monitoring and evaluation. Gaitano has worked with USAID-funded programs in World Relief International, spearheaded World Relief Kenya’s current five-year strategic plan and has a wide experience in fundraising. He will provide a brief synopsis of the project, an update where it is now, and a preview of where it is going.

Project sites are located in East Africa, in parts of Kenya, Rwanda and Uganda, and Heifer has country offices that have been operating for years in Nairobi, Kigali and Kampala, the capitals of the three countries.

Specifically, EADD is boosting production by:

  • Increasing the volume of milk produced
  • Improving milk quality and reducing loss through spoilage
  • Providing access to production inputs through business delivery services

Market-access is being improved by

  • Developing local hubs of business development services and chilling plants that facilitate market access
  • Linking producers to formal markets through processors
  • Increasing producers’ benefit from traditional markets

The project also ensures benefits to women and strives to reduce additional burdens dairy activities could impose on women. Bringing women and youth into production and business activities, and supporting their leadership in the community and dairy farmer associations is being measured, in part by engaging women staff in the project implementation.

So, bring your lunch, or buy your lunch at Café@Heifer, and hear how Heifer, working with partners like the Gates Foundation and others, is making a difference everyday in the lives of families struggling to break free of the cycle of poverty and hunger.

Heifer’s mission is to end hunger and poverty while caring for the Earth. Since 1944, Heifer International has provided livestock and environmentally sound agricultural training to improve the lives of those who struggle daily for reliable sources of food and income. Heifer is currently working in 50 countries, including the United States, to help families and communities become more self-reliant.

For more information, visit www.heifer.org or call 1-800-696-1918.