CORNERSTONE: GENDER AND FAMILY FOCUS
HOW IT WORKS:
In Heifer's work, gender equity is central to success. Men and women must work side by side in equally respected roles and responsibilities for a family to lift itself out of poverty, which is why Heifer confronts issues of patriarchy and inequality head on. Also, women are more likely to share the fruits of their education and success with their families.
Encourage girls to study math and science, and support female entrepreneurs. Raise your sons to treat women as equals, and make sure you advocate education for both genders equally. Parents, teach your boys how to cook and teach your girls how to wield a hammer.
See where Heifer is working around the world to end hunger.
As a family we are so fortunate that we have all of the material things we need. My husband and I have tried to teach our children, from day one, to use things and love people, not the opposite. We started the tradition of collecting donations in lieu of birthday presents as a way to put this belief into action. Each year our kids choose which organization they would like to support. We have been touched by how many friends and family members give generously to the organization the birthday kid has chosen. We are a farming family and I think that this is why Heifer International is the organization that my kids are drawn to year after year. Click the title of this story to read more...
"I can't imagine a time without Heifer's influence on our family," Heifer International Public Facilities Board member, Elizabeth Small, shared...
My father, Elmer Huffman, volunteered through the Church of the Brethren to take a load of dairy heifers to Holland in 1944. He then joined UNRRA and worked to take two additional loads of cattle and horses to Europe. My brothers and I kept our family farm running, milking 24 cows and handling all the chores with the other livestock. Our family of seven kids were very proud of our father and his willingness to be of service to the hurting farmers in Europe after the war. We have continued to support the Heifer project as a memorial to our Dad.
When Edwin's mother received 10 chickens, she was overwhelmed with gratitude by the kindness of strangers.
This Thanksgiving, I brought my family on board to Heifer International by giving a gift in their names. Each of the 24 family members was given a picture from the catalog of the animal he/she gave.
Regine Ndjiwo, 55, and Justine Passo, 50, are members of Heifer projects in the western region of Cameroon, a little over nine miles from Heifer’s office in Bamenda. They are part of GIC APEB (Groupe d’Initiative Commune d’Apiculture et Eleveurs de Bamepah) created in Bamepah Village.
Valerik Khachatryan is a skillful tailor. He is famous in his village for his beautiful work. When he is not busy sewing or tailoring, he does small-scale farming. His family, which includes his wife Amalya, daughter Zhanna, 16, and son Vanik, 13, owns two calves, six hens, 10 chickens and a small pool with carp fish. Valerik dreams of growing their family farm.
My wife and I have just returned from a Heifer Project study trip to Ecuador. We have long been friends of Heifer and we have now seen first hand the ongoing response to human need in which Heifer is engaged.
When I was given the opportunity to volunteer at Heifer International, I was thrilled because it was an opportunity to support a cause whereby I have personally witnessed its contribution towards alleviating poverty. In my own little way, I hope I can contribute towards the mission of Heifer International in ending hunger and poverty in the world.
Heifer India participant, Jaituna Ameen Khan, recites 12 Cornerstones of Heifer International
What is the significance of Cornerstones? Why are these given so much prominence? Vineeta Sharma, administrative officer for Heifer India, gives her thoughtful take on Heifer's 12 Cornerstones for Just and Sustainable Development.
I no longer behave like I used to, the way I used to handle my wife. Considering gender awareness, I have benefited from the project and our family relations have greatly improved.
Now my cow shed is better than that house in which I lived. When my husband received Cornerstones and Gender and Justice training, he also understood me. Everybody, including my husband, now asks my opinion and suggestions for decisions−without my decision nothing happens.
I see children everywhere at Passing on the Gift® events, door-to-door visits, hanging around their mothers and marching in rallies alongside women. These children are growing up around strong, independent women who have a voice and opinions to bring change in their community.
We named our cause “Mooooved to Action” and our goal was to raise enough money by selling our homemade jewelry to purchase a milk cow for a family that needs help through Heifer International. Our kids could hardly wait to purchase the cow and worked for about three months on their goal.
I received two goats from Heifer International and applied the knowledge I acquired during Improved Animal Management training while raising them. After receiving the animals I have passed on two goats. My small effort has helped my family have a better life. I hope other women will be able to achieve bigger success by working harder.
Aol Josphine in Acet Central village, Uganda. She is a participant in Heifer International's Gulu Women Dairy Farmers project.
Anandi Jatav is an example of what women's empowerment can do.
Empowering women is at the core of Heifer International’s model for sustainable development. In honor of International Women’s Day on March 8, this week we are sharing stories of the women with whom Heifer works, who take the gifts of livestock and education to produce extraordinary results for themselves, their families and their communities.
Women leaders from all corners of Ukraine participated in study tours between October 2012 and February 2013. Funded by Heifer Ukraine and the Women's Information Consultative Center, the trainings aimed to solve problems such as high unemployment, domestic violence and lack of medical care.