I’ve always felt that the best gifts are the ones we give, not receive.
It’s something I believe in my heart, in my soul and in my core.
To me, during the holiday season… giving back and making an impact in my community or in the world in someway, shape or form is the most important. Each holiday season I love doing something special, in a way to give back. I’ve made it a mission to show my children firsthand about the importance of giving back. It’s extra important for me not just to talk about it, I want to do, I want to be proactive with them. I want to show them how good it feels to do good because I believe that they will continue the cycle as they grow and have families of their own. My children are young (12 and under), so believe me… I know that when it comes to the holiday season they have their “Santa” lists. But… and this is a big but, I want them to know that they’re very lucky not to have to ask Santa for food or shelter. I love having the opportunity to share and teach with them about some incredible organizations throughout the world doing good and giving back.
This year I’m introducing them to Heifer International.
What is Heifer International?
Heifer International’s mission is to work with communities to end world hunger and poverty and to care for the Earth.
Pretty incredible mission, right?
Heifer works to empower families to turn hunger and poverty into hope and prosperity by providing livestock, agricultural training, tools and education to small-scale farmers. Heifer links communities and helps bring sustainable agriculture and commerce to areas with a long history of poverty.
The reason why Heifer International really stuck out to me is because they help their father throughout the spring/summer/fall months with our gardens, to provide food for our family and our neighbors/friends. It’s a passion project for my husband, but it’s something that my children know and understand and see the impact the garden makes on just a few people that they know and love.
Photo courtesy of Heifer International.
Heifer’s animals provide partners with both food and reliable income, as agricultural products such as milk, eggs and honey can be traded or sold at market. When many families gain this new sustainable income, it brings new opportunities for building schools, creating agricultural cooperatives, forming community savings and funding small businesses. It’s pretty extraordinary when you stop and think about the good that comes from Heifer’s animals.
The core of Heifer’s model is Passing on the Gift. This means families share the training they receive, and pass on the first female offspring of their livestock to another family. This extends the impact of the original gift, allowing a once impoverished family to become donors and full participants in improving their communities.
Photo courtesy of Heifer International.
Personally for me, this is the most powerful part. The goal of every Heifer project is to help families achieve self-reliance. Heifer does this by providing people the tools they need to sustain themselves.
By 2020, Heifer aims to help 4 million families achieve living incomes. This income will allow them to send their children to school, feed themselves adequately across every month of the year; and have proper housing, water, hygiene and other essential resources.
So what can you and your family do this holiday season to help and give back?
Just head over to Heifer International Gift Catalog and choose a gift that will help a family for a lifetime.
As you can see, a goat can be purchased for $120 or shared for $10. The beauty of a gift like this for a family is that it will help be a source of food and allow families to have them be sold at markets. You’re giving a family the additional gift of extra income. As you can see, there’s many different options and more on the site, too!
There’s also “basic need” gifts you can gift, too.
One gift that I have a strong connection, too as well… to empower women. It is just incredible to see the difference you can help make in someone’s life. Truly make.
I strongly urge you to check out Heifer International this holiday season.
We will be choosing from the Animals and Empower Women categories this holiday season. I love knowing that our family can make a positive and good impact in someone’s life. It’s just wonderful. To day, Heifer International in 70 years has helped nearly 25 million people out of hunger and poverty. Just absolutely incredible beyond incredible.
Visit Heifer.org to learn more and check out Heifer’s online gift catalog. Allow your children to help with the gifting. Believe me, it’s pretty special to do as a family. Shows the true importance of giving back.
This post was produced with support from Heifer International. All opinions are, of course, my own.