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LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (June 1, 2012) – No smile is more sweet than that of a child, and no cry is more cutting than the wail of a toddler. Children are not just the precious keepers of the future. They are a source of joy and purpose for their families every day. Heifer International marks International Children’s Day today as a chance to focus attention on the pressing need to keep youngsters well-nourished and out of poverty.
Children rely on others for all their needs, including the special care and education that will shape them into healthy and productive citizens. The wellbeing of children in a community is an expression of how much the society values its most vulnerable members. Today, millions of children live in poverty and don’t have the health care, opportunities or even the food they need. These needs fall to adults—to all of us to fulfill.
Heifer International works to end hunger and poverty by empowering families through gifts of livestock and training, to improve nutrition and incomes. These gifts have a critical impact on children, by boosting nutrition immediately and by supplying more money for health care, education and better living conditions.
Heifer International President and CEO Pierre Ferrari points out that 25,000 children under the age of five die every day, with one-third of those deaths resulting from malnutrition.
“Picture a sports stadium filling up with children and then emptying, every day. That’s how many young lives are lost every day. It’s not okay,” Ferrari said.
Children are especially vulnerable in their first, 1,000 days. Children can suffer illnesses, stunting and slowed brain development as a result of malnutrition that will impair them for the rest of their lives. On Children’s Day, Heifer International asks institutions and individuals to help end the conditions that lead to this suffering, most of which is entirely preventable.
Heifer International’s proven model of assistance gives families the tools to become self-reliant and provide for their children not just today, but into the future. To learn more about Heifer International’s work, visit www.heifer.org.
About Heifer International
Heifer’s mission is to end hunger and poverty while caring for the Earth. Since 1944, Heifer International has provided livestock and environmentally sound agricultural training to improve the lives of those who struggle daily for reliable sources of food and income. Heifer is currently working in 40 countries, including the United States, to help families and communities become more self-reliant. For more information, visit or call 1-800-696-1918.