Charity Logo

Charity Logo

Charity of the Month


In December I am riding for Heifer International. Founded in 1944, Heifer International works with communities around the world to end hunger and poverty and to care for the Earth. Its approach is more than a handout. Heifer provides animals (e.g., heifers, goats, water buffalos, chickens, rabbits, fish, and bees) and training to impoverished people in over 30 countries. The animals can give milk, meat, or eggs; provide draft power; or form the basis of a small business. Communities make their own decisions about what crops, animals, and market strategies make sense for their everyday conditions and experiences.

Heifer International is based on 12 Cornerstones, such as Sustainability; Genuine Need and Justice; and Gender and Family Focus. Perhaps the best known Cornerstone is Passing on the Gift, in which Heifer recipient families pass on the offspring of their animals to others in need. In this way, whole communities can raise their standard of living.

A donation to Heifer International also can make a wonderful alternative holiday gift. Instead of yet another sweater for Grandma that she really doesn’t need, why not donate a Heifer animal or a share of an animal in her honor? Does your child really need so many new toys? Instead of five new toys, give him/her three new toys and a Heifer flock of chicks. Heifer has honor cards to let your loved ones know of your gift on their behalf.

I have set up a Team Heifer page to support Heifer International through A Year of Centuries. My goal is to raise $500. Please make your donation through If you would like more information about Heifer’s work, please visit Whether you give to honor a loved one or make a regular donation, thank you for taking steps to transform the world for the better.

Sunday, December 29, 2013

Everyone is Buzzing about Heifer Bees

Bees help pollinate plants and provide a sweet treat to eat.  Their travel from plant to plant means more produce from crops, gardens, orchards – and flowers, too.  Beekeeping can be done part-time to supplement family income, with small start-up costs and homemade equipment.  Honey and beeswax can be sold for income that allows families to meet basic needs.

Bee Facts
  • Bees produce about three times as much honey as the hive needs.
  • A bee colony includes one queen bee, a few hundred drones, and many workers.
  • When a bee returns to the hive, it “dances” to tell other bees where to find pollen.
  • A starter colony is about 20,000 bees and is shipped to Heifer International partners in a 3 ½-pound package.

Bee Tale
Heifer International bees helped Agaba Jimmy Zab of Uganda buy a bicycle.  As instructed, he placed beehives near his field of maize, beans and tomatoes.  Crosspollination by the bees resulted in better crops than ever before, and he got a good price at the vegetable market.  With that money and the sale of honey, he bought the bike and is saving to buy land.  He happily passed on a bee colony to a neighbor and says, “Long live Heifer!”

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