First, Heifer helps a community group analyze their situation. Heifer CommunityThey ask: What do we need? What are our resources? What would we like to see happen in five years? Then, they plan specific activities to achieve their goals.
At this point, the Heifer "living loan" becomes reality. Farmers prepare for their animals by participating in training sessions, building sheds, and sometimes planting trees and grasses.
Then the livestock arrives – bringing with it the benefits of milk, wool, draft power, eggs and offspring to pass on to another farmer.
Finally, the group evaluates its progress, and the cycle repeats as the group moves to more and more ambitious goals, each time visioning, deciding, implementing and reflecting.
Passing on the GiftEvery family and community that receives assistance promises to repay their living loan by donating one or more of their animal's offspring to another family in need. This practice of "Passing on the Gift" ensures project sustainability, develops community and enhances self-esteem by allowing project partners to become donors.
This is Heifer's sustainable approach to ending hunger and poverty – one family, one animal at a time. It's not temporary relief. It's not a handout. It's securing a future with generations of people who have hope, health and dignity.