Life and self-worth from a goat
In rural Haiti, where 50 percent of children do not attend school and only 23 percent complete secondary school (US Dept. of Labor), equipping teens to support themselves can literally save their lives. This is particularly true in child-led households where one or both parents have died of AIDS.
Sixty-one older children were trained in animal husbandry during the past six months, according to Eris Norvilus, coordinator of World Concern’s Orphans and Vulnerable Children (OVC) project in Haiti. “This training helps the teenagers develop a sense of responsibility and self-worth and gives them a means to support themselves and their families,” he says.
Oftentimes, a breeder goat is the first thing the youth has ever owned or been completely responsible for. As teens gain pride in ownership, they begin to realize, “I actually matter.” And, as the teens contribute to their communities, that sense of validation spreads to others.
Norvilus trains community volunteers to teach goat breeding to teens. He also works closely with local religious leaders to articulate consistent faith-based values to the youth.
The animal husbandry program could not succeed without the mentorship and training efforts of the Haitian churches and volunteers. Your support equips their team to continue building a self-sustaining community, one goat at a time.