Thursday, December 22, 2011

Gifts That Really Keep Giving

...and no, I don't mean the fruitcake that people keep passing around. Don't look so innocent. We know you're taking it to the gift exchange.

I mean gifts through Heifer International. Heifer International works to fight poverty and hunger all over the world by providing families "living loans" of livestock, crop seeds, and training. Those who receive livestock from Heifer agree to pass along one of that animal's offspring to another family, so the gifts quite literally multiply. Many of the gifts allow the families to send children to school when they normally wouldn't be able to afford it; there's a gift that's hard to put a price on.

I look forward to getting their catalog each year at holiday time to read the "Success stories" of past recipients and to look at it with my daughter to pick out what gift we should give this year. (She's twenty now, and still likes choosing "something that won't get eaten.")

Here are some examples of gifts you can give through Heifer:

- A llama to provide wool for a South American family to sell
- Honeybees that will make honey and double a farm's crops through pollination
- A water buffalo to plow a field and provide milk
- A flock of geese to provide a family with eggs for much-needed protein

You can see more gifts in Heifer's online gift catalog, and you can always buy a share of an animal if buying the whole thing is outside of your budget. Of course you can also make a monetary donation for Heifer to use where it's most needed. I saw that they have a new interactive section to show kids how the different animals they give will help families around the world.

And here's another way to give--borrowing an idea from Nathan Bransford, I'll start a new holiday tradition here by donating $2 per comment left on this post between now and midnight Christmas Eve. Let me know what your wish is for the new year!

25 comments:

  1. I'll play! I have a lot of wishes for the new year, but the biggest one is that everyone in The Class of 2k12 has awesome launches and sells buttloads of books!

    p.s. just started reading CHAINED and I'm SOOOOO in love with it already. :-)

    ReplyDelete
  2. What a great idea to donate for every comment. I should do that.

    My wish for the new year is for those who've harbored grudges to lay the past to rest and learn to forgive.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Hooray for Heifer! My wish is for more peace and happiness in 2012. Thanks for participating!

    ReplyDelete
  4. Great wishes so far! And thanks so much, Joanne! So glad you're enjoying the book.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Lynne, I love this organization! One of these days I'm going to get my Peru story off the shelf and to celebrate, I'll 'give' my agent & editor an alpaca for the holidays! Normally I would wish for peace on earth and good will for all, but at the moment, I wish elves would come clean up my house and set up my Christmas tree.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Heifer is great!

    My wish for the new year is health and peace.

    ReplyDelete
  7. My wish is the same every year...writing success for all of us. Oh...and world peace.

    ReplyDelete
  8. I was introduced to Heifer by @mary_russell, over at twitter, who sponsored a big bee-support thing for GOD OF THE HIVE. Writers may be mostly not rich, but we can do great things through our creativity. :)

    My New Year's wish is for health, peace, and love for all.

    ReplyDelete
  9. That's so cool of you to support Heifer and to explain what they do so well! Thank you!

    My wish for 2012 is for everyone to recieve their greatest heart's desire.

    ReplyDelete
  10. Hey, we've raised enough for a flock of geese so far! I love hearing all your wishes for the new year.

    Thanks, everyone, and keep the comments coming!

    ReplyDelete
  11. This is awesome. My mom works for Heifer in their office in AR. A lot of times for Xmas now we donate to heifer for each others gifts. :)

    ReplyDelete
  12. I wish for more camaraderie and good will among us all.

    ReplyDelete
  13. I love Heifer! What a beautiful idea, Lynne! My wish is that we all take care of each other, and support each other's dreams and goals!

    ReplyDelete
  14. I love giving to Heifer :) I also love giving to microfund places like Kiva.org and Opportunity.org because you get to pick which person/industry you are helping out. And then they pay you back and you get to do it again and again :)

    But yay for any kind of giving! Great idea Nathan and Lynne. *heads over to Bransford's blog*

    ReplyDelete
  15. Such a great idea! Way to get into the spirit of the holidays. Best in the New Year to you and yours!

    ReplyDelete
  16. * Stopping by on my way from Nathan Bransford's blog. Heifer is a wonderful organization! Thanks for doing this!

    ReplyDelete
  17. I love Heifer, my family and I always do a little donation this time of year. Such a wonderful gift to give!

    ReplyDelete
  18. Yay for Heifer! Good luck on your donation drive!

    ReplyDelete
  19. This looks like a very good program!

    ReplyDelete
  20. Wonderful idea. My wish for 2012 is for affluent people to become more compassionate and provide more help to others less fortunate.

    ReplyDelete
  21. A great idea!

    I wish for less corporate control in everyone's lives.

    ReplyDelete
  22. Scraping in under the wire!

    My wish is that snow will not melt until the temp hits 60 degrees, but only if it never snows on the roads. Fields are fine. Backyard? Check. Roads? No.

    And it should be warmer, the snow. Who likes that freezing slushball down the back, soaking into the Long Johns?

    ReplyDelete
  23. My wish for next year, a less stressful year healthwise and in other ways than 2011

    ReplyDelete
  24. Thanks so much for participating, everyone! 24 comments means a $48 donation to Heifer International, which I'll round up to $50 to get the "Basket of Hope" gift of chickens and rabbits:

    https://secure1.heifer.org/gift-catalog/hope-gift-basket.html

    ReplyDelete