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2011 WiLD Awards - Lasma Kronberga
Edited by Donna Stokes, World Ark managing editor
Heifer's annual Women in Livestock Development awards celebrate standout participants from the four project areas in which Heifer works: Africa, Asia and the South Pacific, the Americas, and Central and Eastern Europe. Not only do the women chosen for this honor show great skill and perseverance in raising animals and crops, they also embody the heart of sustainable development: The transformation from recipient to donor, student to teacher, follower to leader. This year's winners, from Tanzania, Cambodia, Ecuador and Latvia, speak of confidence, financial independence and pride in their journeys of hard work and determination to succeed. To read about each winner, click on the photos below:
Grassroots Award Winner
Lasma Kronberga recently represented Latvia at a European Union conference, where she spoke about her personal experience in overcoming poverty. It wasn't long ago that Kronberga, just divorced and with four children to care for, was afraid she would fail to feed her family by herself.
"Usually the only way out of difficulties in the countryside is hard drinking," Kronberga said. "But my way out of difficulties was hard work with Heifer ideas in our local village."
In 2007, she received 10 milk goats as part of a Heifer project that started in her village of Veclaicene. Local families immediately chose her to be a project leader.
She energetically took on the work, organizing trainings for the community, gathering participants for brainstorming and distributing responsibilities among project participants. From the beginning she encouraged full family participation. Not only women, but also their husbands and children, attended trainings, field projects and other group activities.
In 2008, Kronberga presented the idea of learning handicrafts to supplement the income from animals. Now Heifer participants are producing wool from their sheep and making blankets and hats, which are sold regionally and also to Scandinavian countries.
"As Heifer believes, I also believe, that the global problems can be solved if we all share what we have and care for each other," Kronberga said. "As the Latvian saying tells, 'The hands that know how to give never stay empty'!"
Honor the Women in Your Life
Heifer International celebrates the independent, strong, loving and talented women we work with every day to help end hunger and poverty around the world.
Join us this spring in honoring your loved ones with a donation to Heifer.
Mother's Day is May 8. Pass on the Gift of livestock and training to help mothers everywhere provide nutritious meals and a hopeful future to their children.