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Active projects from around the world

Maasai Cow Project

The Maasai Cow Project is run to help Maasai women, often widows, who have very little means of sustaining themselves and their children.

They are selected by a committee consisting of local Maasai women who allocate cows that have been purchased by the project from the local markets. Before they are allocated the cows are branded so that they cannot be sold or taken away by the menfolk.

The project works very well in giving the women a degree of independence and status as the ‘owners’ of a cow and the means to feed themselves and their children. After the first calf has been returned to the project, all other calves belong to them. The current cost of donating a cow is around £275. 

Every year there is hunger in the rural areas where we work as rains become increasingly unpredictable and prices rise beyond the means of many. Some years the drought is worse than others but there is always ‘a hunger gap’ before the harvest that needs to be filled. We use what funds we receive to support those communities that we have ties with as wisely as we can. The food is usually maize and beans that is divided out by Maasai to the womenfolk so that the most vulnerable get fed first.

We run training seminars and support two rural trainers to promote Conservation Agriculture as part of a long-term strategy to help Tanzania become self-sufficient in food. This is a small but consistent contribution that we can make within a larger national programme. We are seeing some steady progress in the changes in farming lifestyles and practices of those we are working with.

Graham and Lisa Stevenson, 

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