When a new Heifer Ukraine project came to the village of Nova Orzhytsia, Lyudmila Kosyukova's family did not participate in it from the start – they thought that other families had a greater need than theirs. They were fortunate enough to have food, a small house, and a tight-knit family.
New Opportunities for the Kosyukova FamilyFinally, in 2008 the Kosyukovas decided to join the Agricultural Service Cooperative and received a Heifer cow that was passed-on from a Heifer project family. This was a blessing! The gift of a cow from Heifer provided enough milk to consume and sell. Soon the heifer calved and Lyudmila sold the calf at a market.
With all their savings from selling excess milk, the family has earned more money than they have ever had before! There was a long discussion on how to spend this money – there are always different needs in the household: on repairing the house, barn, buying clothes and other household items. But Lyudmila and her husband decided that the wisest investment would in education and training!
They spent the money to purchase a computer, which is a very rare thing for the average rural Ukranian family. Rural youth have limited opportunities to get computer skills in Ukraine; this also prevents them from planning their higher education.
Lyudmila's daughter, Vika, quickly learned computer skills and now, after a year with a project, Kosyukova's family has new perspectives – Vika's got a job from their Village Council! With her working experience and computer skills, Vika feels more self-confident and plans to continue her education and to go to the college in Kyiv! She thinks that with her dream education in public administration, she will be able to make a bigger input in her village development.
Lyudmila says that it was trainings on Heifer's Training and Education Cornerstone and all Heifer's work in the village that inspired her to think of investing her family's savings in training and education that could further have an impact on Sustainability and Self-Reliance of not only their family, but the community in general!