I've seen the future, and it's goat-shaped

We all gathered under a large Baobab tree in the community of Manonga, Tanzania.

It seemed as though the whole community had come out to see us and share the progress they had made with their irrigation project. Community leaders were introduced to us one by one, through a translator. They also explained the process and challenges of digging the trenches to water the fields.

The community meeting under the tree. Photo/Kristian Foster
The community meeting under the tree. Photo/Kristian Foster

Before we were to witness the trenches and how difficult it is to dig through hard clay, we were presented with various gifts. Thomas received a Maasai walking stick, and Alison received a goat.

The goat was a bit of a surprise. “What will we do with a goat?” wondered one of the ambassadors, laughing a little.

But the reason behind the gift was no laughing matter. The community was truly grateful for the partnership of World Vision Canada, and wanted to thank us for all they had been able to achieve.

Alison receiving a goat at the community meeting. Photo/Paul Bettings
Alison receiving a goat at the community meeting. Photo/Paul Bettings

Knowing we could not take the goat home with us, we decided to give it to Shija’s family, a sponsored child we were privileged to meet. This goat will transform their lives.

Transforming lives is exactly what goats did for Tassy from Zambia.

Tassy has been raised by her grandparents, Nelson and Jerecy, since she was just a year old. There used to be little money for food and school supplies, which jeopardized both her health and future.

After the family received five goats and animal training from World Vision, they began generating income from their livestock. From these funds they were able to increase the size of their vegetable patch, providing nutritious food and additional income for the family.

Thanks to the goats given to Tassy’s family she has been able to continue her education and now wants to become a nurse!

Tassy (right) and her best friend Rosemary in school uniforms. Photo/Jon Warren
Tassy (right) and her best friend Rosemary in school uniforms. Photo/Jon Warren

From Oct 2014 to Sept 2015, over 12,500 lives have been transformed with goats and other livestock thanks to generous Canadians. 

Though you likely won’t ever be given a live goat, you can provide one to a family in need, and change lives this Christmas through the World Vision Gift Catalogue. 

Story by Kristian Foster.