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There’s some exciting news coming from Nepal. Tomorrow, Friday, Heifer will formally launch a new $23.8 million project there, helping families band together to emerge from hunger and poverty.
|Thuli Maya Lama, 45, of Juretthhum, Nepal.|
This project will work in 28 districts to build up goat and dairy enterprises over the course of five years. Demand for these products is high in Nepal, but the country depends on imports to satisfy the need. By strengthening local production, Heifer hopes to reduce the number of goats being imported into Nepalby about 30 percent by the year 2016, and reduce milk imports by 10 percent.
This is an expansion of Heifer’s work helping thousands of Nepalese people move from vulnerability to self-reliance. The project aims to teach families how to produce more meat and milk by managing their animals more carefully. Then, Heifer plans to help participants forge trade alliances. By forming community groups and cooperatives, farmers can better connect with buyers.
The Nepal project will employ Heifer’s unique holistic training system to empower its participants for the long term. In addition to learning how to properly care for their animals, participants will be educated in areas like money management, gender equality, literacy, community collaboration and entrepreneurship.
With that foundation, small-scale farmers can not only feed their ownfamilies, but also work together to find larger markets for more dairy products.
Heifer International has worked in Nepal since 1977 to reduce poverty and build sustainable family enterprises with animals like sheep, goats, ducks and water buffalo. Now Heifer is confident that in areas of Nepal with dire poverty, its new goat and dairy project can create transformative and lasting change.
In September, we posted a series of guest posts by Ian Hands, a participant on a Study Tour to Peru. Sarah Donaghy, a member of Heifer’s Education team and the leader of the trip, reported back on camera some of the experiences the group had.
Steve Denne, Heifer International Chief Operating Officer, and Pietro Turilli, Vice President of Central and Eastern European programs, are visiting Heifer projects in Georgia. In the coming days we will share more about their visit, but first we want to share this overview of our work there.
by Medea Tsitskishvili, Heifer Georgia
At present Heifer Georgia is implementing 18 projects in seven regions of Georgia and is assisting smallholder farmers in attaining improved nutrition and an increased and sustainable income by pursuing value-added activities and scaling up their operations. This assistance comes in various forms through providing high-quality plants and animals (heifers, horses, goats, sows, rabbits, poultry, and bee-hives) to improve production levels, providing trainings and equipment for micro-enterprises, promoting community development and sustainable agricultural techniques.
During its short lifespan, Heifer Georgia has developed a diversified project portfolio and established valuable partnerships with both local and international development organisations, such as GRM International, HEKS EPER, The Embassy of Japan, Polish Aid, Care International, Agro-Service Georgia.
Heifer Georgia was the first organisation that introduced industrial broiler hybrid breeds of turkeys and geese in Georgian agriculture and supported establishment of women-led poultry enterprises, thereby providing a unique opportunity to women to create a profitable business with access to good markets for geese and turkeys in the area. Heifer Georgia also started a project aimed at rebuilding the rabbit breeding industry in East Georgia through the establishment of three commercial rabbit breeding centers, encouraging sustainable small-scale rabbit farming for local people with the end result being profit generation.
Since July 2011, Heifer Georgia has employed “Market for Poor” (M4P) methodology and has focused on value-added market chain development projects, introducing functional linkage between suppliers, producers and final markets, supporting poor primary producers to enter markets.