Photo by Chelsey McNiel, Communications Intern, Heifer Headquarters
Heifer International volunteers change lives as they share in our mission to end hunger and poverty and care for the Earth. They generate support and spread joy through fundraising, education and meaningful relationships.
In the Southern Philippines, volunteers helped project participants learn methods and strategies for improved animal health.
Jun Ayensa, regional program manager for Heifer Southern Philippines, captured their work in a photo story.
On Saturday night, May 18, 2013, Heifer International held its first “Beyond Hunger: Feast in the Field” event in Little Rock, Arkansas. This unique “farm to fork” celebration raised funds and awareness for sustainable agriculture benefiting Heifer projects in the Arkansas Delta and Nepal.
Feast in the Field provided a chance for those living in the Arkansas area to come together to support Heifer’s transformative work.
Heifer International headquarters was turned into a white farmland with animals brought in from the Heifer Ranch, local farmers showing off their produce and an information booth where attendees could learn more about Heifer’s work.
Guests came dressed in all-white, snappy casual attire and shared an evening of local food and community spirit on the grounds of Heifer Village. The event generated awareness and raised funds for this important cause.
Guests enjoyed a family-style dinner featuring local foods prepared by the award-winning executive chefs from the Capital Hotel and heard from distinguished speakers such as Heifer project participants, Heifer President and CEO, and the mayor of Hughes, Arkansas, Larry Owens.
Ferrari discussed the critical issues of hunger and poverty. He said, “As we enjoy our time together this evening, more than 2,000 children will die from hunger-related issues. That is most certainly not over-dinner conversation, but it shows how serious the problem is and how quickly we must move to resolve it.”
Though Heifer has helped more than 18.5 million families to date, we must work faster to help end hunger in all areas of need.
Heifer International also joined with the Little Rock Film Festival this year to give the first ever Social Impact Award. The award included a $10,000 cash prize sponsored by Little Rock Central High School National Historic Site, a unit of the National Park Service. The winner was “These Birds Walk,” by filmmakers Omar Mullick and Bassam Tariq.
Also awarded that night with the 2013 Dan West Fellow Award was Jerry Bedford. Bedford was Heifer’s first Director of Development and has seen Heifer grow from a small organization to one that now helps more than two million people a year out of hunger and poverty. Bedford helped establish Heifer International as one of the most effective nonprofit organizations today.
The night concluded with a performance by The Voice finalist and Heifer supporter, Cody Belew. He performed his song he wrote specifically for Heifer called, “Say Love.” As the crowd enjoyed his music, the night came to a close where attendees saw how Heifer’s work helped families move out of hunger and poverty and into a life of self-reliance.
If you could not make the first “Beyond Hunger: Feast in the Field” event Saturday night, we offer you the slide show below to see more photos of the event, and if you would like to make a donation to help the Arkansas Delta or projects in Nepal to visit, www.Heifer.org.
View more photos of the event in the slideshow below or on Flickr.
This weekly post shines a light on a handful of stories from Heifer.org’s “From the Field” section.
Gegham, a 13-year-old rural youth engaged in Heifer Armenia’s Young Agriculturists Network of Armenia (YANOA) project, dreamed of establishing his own duck farm. He developed a business plan through his local YES! Youth Club and was awarded a $100 seed grant to put his plan into action. His little farm quickly grew and Gegham passed on his seed grant to another youth. He said he does his best to learn about the ducks well-being and how to give proper care.
Thirteen-year- old Gegham started a duck farm using a $100 seed grant from Heifer Armenia. Photo by Anna Arakelyan, Business Education Expert, Development Principles NGO
In Vietnam, one Heifer family is enhancing their impact with promising results. Tran Thi Cuc Huong and her husband, Nguyen Van Lieu, grow coconuts, dragon fruit and morning glory and raise chickens and pigs. They use a biogas system to turn pig manure into methane for cooking and electricity, which also prevents their ponds from being polluted. Huong said their dreams of expanding and helping others only became a reality with hard work, creativity and knowledge from Heifer’s trainings.
For 61 new project families in Gui Xi Village, China, the dream of ending hunger and poverty is taking its first steps. The village’s first Passing on the Gift® (POG) ceremony in April 2013, presented these families with gifts of livestock and welcomed them into a community achieving promising results of improved living conditions, education and health. The new families agreed to Pass on the Gifts and continue to spread unity and love in their community.
Every week we highlight some of the people who are funding our work creatively or helping us spread the word of our mission online. If you spot Heifer International while you’re surfing the web or know of a fun or creative fundraising effort, please share it with us here in the comments.
Photo courtesy of Heifer International
Fantasy author Patrick Rothfuss and his Worldbuilders team came to visit Heifer International headquarters in Little Rock and Heifer Ranch in Perryville. While here he talked to a reporter from the Arkansas Times, who wrote up this great story about the visit and about the Worldbuilders’ successful fundraising efforts.
Congrats to Broward County Public Schools Nova High School teacher Shawna Morgan, this year’s Florida Economic Educator of the Year. A human geography teacher, Morgan and her students supported various international causes including Heifer International.
More than a dozen poultry raisers opened their coops to visitors on May 18, with donations received during the tours going to help end hunger through Heifer. What a great way to learn about raising chickens and Heifer International.
Congrats to Dr. Trevor Tomkins, who has been active with Heifer International as a board member and the Heifer Foundation. He was recently honored with the 2013 Distinguished Service Award for his life-long contributions to the feed industry by the American Feed Industry Association.
Vice President of Heifer’s Africa Program, Elizabeth Bintliff, talks with dowser about the East Africa Dairy Project, which recently received $8.5 million from the Gates Foundation.
The Rotary Youth hope to purchase an ark through Heifer International, which includes a pair of each animal, and have held many fundraisers this year to accomplish their goal, such as Rotaraking, helping with tours, and their latest event, electronics recycling.
Have you checked out When Cows Fly yet? It’s an online portal where Heifer donors, volunteers and participants from around the world can share their stories. Like this fiber artist, who is using her talents to benefit others. Or Sarah Sow, who donated a gift to Heifer in honor of her mother, as well as her good friend Polly Pig’s mother. (You are curious about their names, aren’t you? Click through and find out!) Heifer Sacramento shared info about a Fun Raiser fundraiser they are holding, and a California church’s Bike-a-Thon. You can share your story, too.
Every week we feature a fun and/or educational activity you can try at home or in the classroom. Today is National Pack Rat Day and like pack rats, some of us tend to collect more belongings than we really need. Here at Heifer International we encourage people to practice Sharing and Caring, one of Heifer’s 12 Cornerstones for Just and Sustainable Development. If you’ve got some things to unpack, here are a few options to lighten your load.
Photo credit: oddlovescompany.com
Hold a Clothing Swap Donating old clothing is helpful, but a swap can make a more direct impact in your neighborhood or organization. Ask participants to bring a few articles of clothing and then have fun haggling over the trades. A swap can also be done with shoes, toys and books.
Upcycle With Style Old T-shirts for quilt squares, abandoned toys as planters and plastic grocery bags to make trash cans-Pinterest is filled with DIY instructions. Inventive minds are a powerful tool in caring for the earth. Before you recycle, try to find ways to upcycle the weary and worn things in your cluttered closets.
Give Your Time If you have a “load” of time on your hands, why not use it to help others organize their abundant belongings? Or, use it in other meaningful ways like taking a meal to new parents, offering to walk your elderly neighbor’s dog or care for the Earth by picking up trash.
Through cooperation and friendship, there are many ways to share and care. Be creative and get involved in your community. Small acts of kindness will spread, building a large network of giving to Pass on the Gift® of hope, unity and friendship.
Triple the impact of your giving this May to empower women in Nepal. Thanks to generous Heifer donors and a small group of local donors moved by our previous success in Nepal, your gift to our May Match will be tripled.
Photo by Russell Powell, courtesy of Heifer International
Heifer’s work in Nepal has led to dramatic transformation in the communities. Working with women who are often unable to overcome the caste system and gender discrimination, Heifer is a proven model to move families from subsistence to sustenance.
Vicki Clarke, a member of Heifer’s Philanthropy team, recently visited Nepal. She reflects on the large differences in the quality of life in areas where Heifer has just started to work and where Heifer has worked for years.
Teghenik, Armenia — Heifer beneficiary Tsovinar Davtyan prepares cheese, the sale of which supports her children and grandchildren. Photo by Geoff Oliver Bugbee
“Families hold societies together, and intergenerational relationships extend this legacy over time. This year’s International Day of Families is an occasion to celebrate connections among all members of the constellation that makes up a family. It is also an opportunity to reflect on how they are affected by social and economic trends – and what we can do to strengthen families in response.”
U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s message for 2013
When Heifer International measures the impact of its projects and programs, it doesn’t just count individuals. Gender and Family Focus is one of Heifer’s Cornerstones for Just and Sustainable Development, and the family unit is central to our work. In fact, we count on strong family bonds and the cooperation that comes with them. Family members are invested in each others’ success, even when they know the fruits of that success won’t be reaped until they’re gone.
“I have seen whatever I would like to see in my life, I don’t need anything more for me. Everything is for my grandchildren,” explained Tsovinar Davtyan, 67, a grandmother of four in the Armenian village of Tekhenik. She cares for her family’s cows because she knows the benefits will last for generations.
May 15 is the United Nations International Day of Families, and this year’s focus is on fostering inter-generational solidarity. That’s a challenge for families in the Philippines, Bolivia and other places where job opportunities are few so young people set off to find opportunities elsewhere. This is where Heifer steps in, helping to build agricultural opportunities locally to keep families intact.
Click here to support a family in need through Heifer International.
As part of a series of celebrations this week, Heifer International will be awarding an all-new Social Impact Film Award for films that promote awareness and advocacy of global problems and solutions in keeping with our mission. The public is invited to free screenings this Friday, May 17, of the films competing for the award as part of the Little Rock Film Festival in our hometown.
The screenings will take place on Friday afternoon and evening at Heifer Village, which neighbors the Clinton Presidential Library in downtown Little Rock. The recipient of Heifer’s Social Impact Award will be announced Saturday evening at Heifer’s Feast in the Field event. The winner will receive a $10,000 prize sponsored by Little Rock Central High School National Historical Site, a unit of the National Park Service
Also on Friday from 4:30 to 7:00 p.m., Heifer International will host a reception, which is open to the public and features the music of The Shannon Boshears Band and Cody Belew, a finalist from NBC’s The Voice. There will be free snacks, hot dogs for sale and a cash bar.
Screening times for the Social Impact Film Award submissions are as follows:
Lunch at the Gyawali household in Bhairavsthan village, Nepal. Photo by Russell Powell, courtesy of Heifer International.
You can find many different kinds of food in Nepal depending on the region, but Dal (lentil soup), Bhat (steamed rice) and Tarkari (curried vegetables) are popular everywhere, and is often accompanied by aachar (pickles). Curried meat is also popular, but meat is expensive so most save it for special occasions. As you head farther north, Tibetan influences become more obvious momos (steamed or fried dumplings stuffed with meat) are common. The further south you go, the more Indian influences you’ll notice. Interestingly, most Nepalese use no silverware, just their right hand to eat.
Take your mind and stomach to Nepal today with this simple Dal recipe.
1 cup red lentils, picked over, rinsed and drained
3 cups water
1 large tomato, cut into 8 wedges (or 8 oz. diced canned tomato)
1/4 cup canola oil
1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds
1 medium onion (yellow or red), finely chopped
5 large cloves garlic, thinly sliced
1 teaspoon ground coriander
3/4 teaspoon ground turmeric
1/2 teaspoon cayenne
1 tablespoon butter
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cups minced cilantro leaves (optional – you can also substitute parsley)
Lunch is prepared in Baugha Gumba Village, Nepal. Photo by Russell Powell, courtesy of Heifer International.
Place lentils, tomato (if using fresh tomato) and water in a large saucepan and bring to a boil.
Reduce heat to a simmer, cover, and cook until lentils are tender and have lost their shape, about 40 minutes (begin checking that there is still water in the pot at 30 minutes and add small batches of water as needed).
Pick out any tomato skins and whisk dal to emulsify it. Keep warm over low heat.
Make the tadka (Indian spice preparation) as follows:
Heat oil in a medium skillet over high heat.
When oil begins to smoke, add cumin seeds.
After seeds have stopped sputtering, add the garlic and onion and saute over medium heat until most of the onion has turned dark brown, 5-10 minutes.
Add the coriander, turmeric and cayenne, stir, and pour the onion/spice mixture over the dal.
Add the butter, tomato (if using canned), cilantro/parsley, and salt to the dal and
simmer for another 5 minutes.
Do you have an international recipe you love? Share it in the comments section below.