Friday, December 5, 2014

Internatl. Volunteer Day, Heifer Ranch

Today being International Volunteer Day I am thinking back to my eleven straight years (1995-2006) of serving as a full-time residential volunteer in Arkansas, Switzerland, and Australia.

My Heifer Ranch years, 1996-2002,  were great, shared with the wonderful volunteers in these two photos, as well as new ones who came every year.
The pictures, not my own, are from the late 1990s.
(Here above, I'm at the bottom right, kneeling.)

We all lived in several volunteer houses on the Ranch's 1,200 acres in Arkansas, USA.
We worked, ate, and played together.
I worked hard caring for the livestock and sometimes in the organic gardens.

Wikipedia explains Heifer International:
Heifer International  is a nonprofit working to eradicate poverty and hunger through sustainable, values-based holistic community development. Heifer distributes animals, along with agricultural and values-based training, to families in need around the world as a means of providing self-sufficiency. Recipients must agree to “pass on the gift” by sharing animal offspring, as well as the skills and knowledge of animal husbandry and agricultural training with other impoverished families.
Based in Little Rock, Arkansas, Heifer International started with a shipment of 17 heifers to Puerto Rico in 1944. Since 1944, Heifer International has distributed livestock such as goats, bees, and water buffalo, along with training and other resources, to 20.7 million families, or more than 105.1 million people in more than 125 countries.  . . .
My earlier posts about the Ranch are here
See what visitors do at Heifer Ranch educational farm: many programs available.

Learn about the good Heifer International does in the world at the website, and while  there click on the Gift Catalog where you can do your holiday shopping!
One share of a goat costs only $10, for instance.  See the other ways you can honor family and friends by  "buying"  animals and stuff in their name.

Instead of money I donated six years of full-time labor.
You might want to apply for a volunteer position of a few months at Heifer Ranch.  Who knows . . .
(Linking to Camera Critters.)


jaz@octoberfarm said...

what a wonderful thing to do! we believe very strongly in volunteer work!

Petrea Burchard said...

I found you in the pictures before I read your post!

Heifer International is one of the finest charities I know of.

William Kendall said...

This is the first I've heard of the organization.

Spiderdama said...

Wonderful work Dina! I've never done anything volunteer work (apart from the church, if it counted), but I will do when I get "released" from my job.
Very nice picture of you:-)

VP said...

There are some catchwords I really do not like in this presentation, but I am sure they are doing something good. Nice to see you there!

Birdman said...

GIVING of oneself is the ultimate power.

Marie said...

Fascinating background of working for a good cause! Love seeing the photos and learning about it.

Hels said...

Has the group had a reunion, years after you all went on to different lives? It would be amazing to swap stories, photos, details of romances etc.

Dina said...

Hels, I think there have been some reunion weekends.
Many vol friends follow one another via Facebook.
Not sure I want to hear "details of romances," though. hehe Several marriages did result!

Peter said...

It must be very rewarding, more strength to you!