When we arrived in Jordan the need was so vast, it was an overwhelming reality. We met families living on their own, occupying a small corner of a Jordanian farmer’s property. We saw families and small children living in tents made of blankets. It pained us to see rashes on children’s faces, nutritional deficiencies, dozen’s of children with developmental disabilities, women in their 90’s not knowing where their next meal would come from. We were introduced to widowed women caring for their children, along with their deceased brother’s children. Each family we met carried such a tragic, heart-wrenching story.
These days with the Syrian refugees living just kilometers across the border opened our hearts to a whole new level of despair, a whole new level of suffering. I spent my nights lying awake, thinking about the safety and intense vulnerability of these families living on their own. Our minds were on fire as the painful reality set in. How could we make a lasting impact on these families? Ideas such as bringing a trunk load of produce seemed frugal, knowing the impact would only be temporary.
The vast need made it difficult to focus in and see how we could make a direct difference here. While food packs go a long way in Greece, we quickly realized they wouldn’t put a dent in the situation here. We began researching and brainstorming sustainable ways to make a difference in the lives of the Syrian Bedouin’s we were forming a loving bond with.
Whenever we think of Bedouin’s, we think of the shepherds with their livestock, and we quickly realized that providing families with two goats each could bring such lasting benefits.
1 – Support nutritional needs of the refugees with milk, who currently lack a stable food supply. (Just think about the nutritional value of fresh protein and vitamin D for young children!).
2 – Providing sustainable income for the families who can sell both the milk and the offspring.
3 – Supporting the Bedouin’s natural lifestyle. Livestock such as goats, sheep, and chickens is common in the Bedouin culture, so we are providing them with their inert ways of supporting themselves and their families. This also brings psychological support, as it is a returning a piece of normalcy, a piece of familiarity.
We are working closely with the organizations on the ground, who have a database of the families who need the most support. Each family we are able to reach will receive two goats in order to support the social welfare of the animal.
We are also taking steps to ensure the sustainability of the goats by:
1 – Writing a contract with the refugees to ensure they do not sell the donated goats. (They are permitted to sell offspring and milk only).
2 – Providing goats to families our partners in Jordan serve, so they can follow up with the families in the future.
3 – Having the land owners sign contracts stating that they will not confiscate the goats, the offspring, or the milk.
Each goat costs 200 JD / 282 USD. This means we can support one family with two goats for 400 JD / 564 USD.
The goats will be properly vetted by medical teams in order to ensure their health and safety. No contribution to this project is too small, as every dollar adds up!
If you are not able to donate directly, you can:
1 – Like and share this post in order to help us reach more potential supporters.
2 – Host a fundraiser in order to purchase even one goat.
3 – Write letters to your community in order to ask for donations toward this project.
4 – Set up a fundraiser on http://www.gojanegive.org Our team is incredibly grateful for your support on this endeavor. Together we can make a difference in the lives of those suffering here in Jordan. Thank you from our hearts to yours.
Note: All funds donated to this campaign will go directly to the Lifting Hand International’s Goat Campaign. You can learn more about LHI here: http://www.liftinghandsinternational.org.