“Heifer International is a non-profit, humanitarian organization dedicated to ending hunger and poverty and caring for the earth. Heifer currently provides livestock, trees, seeds and training in environmentally sound agriculture to families in 30 countries, including the United States. We work with smallholder farming families and communities because we believe they are key to feeding us all.”- Heifer International
Heifer International has been a favorite organization of mine for a long time, but just last fall I learned that Heifer Farm, highlighting the organizations programs, is located just about an hour from where I live. After visiting on a Media Day with World Moms Blog in September I could not wait to bring my family back with me to share the experience. Last weekend I was thrilled to have the opportunity to do so for their spring Pancakes At The Farm event.
We sat down for delicious pancakes bathed in Maple Syrup tapped right at the farm. Later we were given a demonstration of how it was boiled down into it’s final state of deliciousness in the Sugar House. The kids were delighted with the farm animals and asked our guide thoughtful questions about the organization. Specifically, what were the seven Ms? Heifer International was founded by Dan West based on his experience as a relief worker. He realized the aid work he was doing needed a new model to help those in need become self-sufficient as opposed to continually being reliant on aid. As a farmer he knew that a gift of livestock was a gift that would keep on giving. Cows provided the 7 Ms: milk, manure, meat, muscle, money, materials, and motivation. A heifer refers to a pregnant cow, and in 1944 the first dairy cattle were shipped, and Heifer International born.
The goal of Heifer International is to help communities transform themselves through education, environmental stewardship, empowerment of women in the community, and the legacy of passing on generations of animals and knowledge. This in turn generates the accomplishment of the once recipient turning into a donor in their community. At Heifer Farm one can visit model villages from around the world. My family wandered through Peru, the Tibet region of China, Ghana, Kenya and Poland , each highlighting what a typical home would look like, the animals, and agriculture of each region. The farm offers fantastic camps and programs for all ages. I was disappointed to hear that the women’s Lambing Program was sold out already for this year, where women spend 3 nights assisting during the birthing of lambs at the farm with a focus on Heifer’s work to empower women around the world. I am thrilled to know this amazing resource is so nearby and encourage others to check it out. There may even still be spots this weekend at the Pancake breakfast.