The theme of 2013 World Food Day, “Sustainable Food Systems for Food Security and Nutrition,” is center to our mission at Heifer International every day.
Sustainable and environmentally friendly agriculture is the basis of our projects that empower smallholder farmers around the world. Families that no longer face starvation are less likely to destroy forests or overwork their land in a desperate quest to feed themselves. In fact, the opposite becomes the reality: they plant trees, protect water sources and enrich the soil.
The hunger experienced by the extremely poor of the world is not just about caloric deficiencies, but also not having the right nutrition. Inadequate micronutrient intake has far and wide-reaching effects – from cognitive impairment, poor immune systems and decreased productivity, compounding into global economic and human losses.
Most communities and families with whom Heifer International works benefit from the addition of livestock. When raised in balance with crops, trees and the environment in general, livestock can be both a source of highly nutritious food (milk, eggs, meat), a tool to secure other sources of food (manure enriches soil, draft power increases yield, income from selling surplus milk, eggs and meat pays for other food), and increased income. This delicate balance is what we help small farmers develop and maintain.
For nearly 70 years, Heifer has worked to create sustainable food systems and to improve the food security and nutrition of the world’s poor and hungry. We have helped more than 22.6 million families to date, and every year we strive to bring our model to more families with greater efficiency.
Please check out and share our “Meat of the Matter” infographic to spread the word about the importance of animal-based foods in ending global hunger.
About Heifer International:
Heifer International’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 more than 30 countries, including the United States, to help families and communities become more self-reliant. For more information, visit www.heifer.org, read our blog, follow us on Facebook or Twitter, or call 1-800-696-1918.