When women around the world have control of income, it tends to be used for the family,” said Wendy Peskin, who worked as a fundraiser for Heifer International. When men have economic control “it’s not that way.”
Heifer International works mostly with women in rural areas, often where men are absent. Its mission is to work with communities to end hunger and poverty
and to care for the earth. Beginning with heifers more than 60 years ago, the group has branched out to many types of animals and been providing families with a source of food and training, rather than short-term relief. Millions of people in 128 countries have benefits from these gifts that promote self reliance.
“Pass on the gift,” Peskin said, is a cornerstone of the Heifer program. “If you get a cow, the first calf must be raised and passed on,” she said. Generations and generations of animals have been passed along, “that has an enormous multiplying effect.”
It also has the effect of giving a poor person the dignity to pass on athe gift to someone else, she said.
Heifer International does not send people into the countries to handle the training and gifts. “They hire people in the area,” Peskin said. When a village woman exhibits leadership skills, Heifer is likely to train her as a para-veterinarian so she can serve her community.
Peskin said when a woman has an income, its likely she will no longer uffer at the hands of an abusive husband. Often, she said, the woman’s initiative creates meaningful work for her husband in tending the food crops sustained by the gift animal.
Part of the Heifer training, she added, is centered around issues of gender. Frequently men are victims of their cultural milieu. During gender workshops, the men and women detail their day’s activities. The men are often surprised by what the women do.
Heifer also promotes sending girls to school through a “girl child education fund.”
Go to heifer.org to see how you can help with a gift as small as $10.
Zonta Club of Hilo Inducts New Members
Bev McCall, elementary school principal, pictured here with Irene Nagao and Ellen Aoki, was inducted into the Zonta Club of Hilo at the October program meeting. At the September meeting, Jan Haraguchi-Abundo, a sales promotion officer, was inducted.
The inductions are part of Zonta Club of Hiloʻs membership drive.