In The Holiday Giving Spirit

In our family, we know the importance of helping others. Our kids have been exposed this their whole lives through various fundraisers and activities. They've walked 5k, climbed up stairs and seen me go on humanitarian trips.

When Heifer International reached out to me about partnering for a post about giving it was easy to say yes. Plus, I had never had anyone ask me to take a "goat selfie" before :)

A photo posted by C.C. Chapman (@cc_chapman) on

Heifer International's mission is to work with communities to end world hunger and poverty and to care for the Earth. They do this through empowering families by providing them livestock, agricultural training, tools and education. This turns poverty stricken families into  to small-scale farmers.

My daughter has visited their farm in Western Massachusetts several times (I have yet to be able to) where she learned about all of their programs. She got to experience first hand what it is like to farm, live and thrive in the areas of the world where they work and help.

You should visit Heifer.org to learn more.

With my children both being in High School, I thought I'd use this post to inspire something new.

I told them I wanted each of them to research and present to me a charity that they'd like to donate to this year and I'd give them each $50 to donate. It had to be an organization that we haven't given to in the past and I wanted them to be able to answer the question of why they chose them.

On my birthday in a few weeks I'm going to ask them to tell my wife and I who they chose and then I'll make the donation. I wonder who'll they choose.

I personally like Heifer’s model of 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.

Plus, how much fun is it that you can buy a goat, water buffalo or other livestock and help a family in need?

As you can see, I've learned to like goats since my daughter loves them.

Playing With Goats

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.

There are plenty ways to give to those in needs, but I love when you can directly know where your money is going and how it is helping. I encourage you to learn more about Heifer International and the work they do to improve the world around us.

I hope this post helps put you into the giving spirit a bit and that you and your family consider giving in some way during the Holidays.

DisclosureThis post was produced with support from Heifer International. All opinions are, of course, my own.