I was carpooling to book club last night when the topic of Heifer came up. Both of my friends in the car talked about how they love giving Heifer gifts, especially around the holidays. Jennifer owns a small business, and she said she's given a number of gifts through our catalog in honor of some of her key customers. Eve told about how, when she was a kid, her dad (who has never had many hobbies and is therefore hard to shop for) always told her he wanted "World Peace" for Christmas. As an adult, she had the realization that buying the gift of livestock and training for another family in honor of her dad was as close as she could get to giving him world peace.
I've given a handful of Heifer gifts over the years, but not as many as I should. Aside from the fact that I work for Heifer, what I really love about giving a Heifer gift is that I'm essentially giving three gifts. First, to my friend or family member, I'm saying, "I know you don't need more stuff, but I want to honor you this year by giving this gift in your name." Then, there's the original family who benefits from the gift of livestock and training and everything else that goes into one of our projects. THEN, there's the family who receives the original animal's offspring, through our Pass on the Gift model. Talk about bang for your buck!
As easy as it is to give a Heifer gift to my friends and family, something else I need to work on is requesting donations to Heifer in my own name. I'm still at a point in my life where I do have a holiday wish list with tangible things on it (camera to replace my broken one, a winter coat that fits, a pressure canner). But what I really do want, when it comes down to it, really is world peace. I want to live in a world, and raise my family in a world, where everyone has enough healthy food to eat every single day. Where every family can afford to send their kids to school. Where someone's precious child doesn't die every five seconds of every minute of every day. I want that.