They were struggling to survive — but this unlikely gift changed everything

By Allison McCrave
November 19, 2020

Khuyen got married young — too young, she says, to fully understand the weight of a mother’s responsibilities.

“I was already married at 17,” she explains. “At that time, I didn’t think much. But when I had a child, I started to realize there are many things to worry about.”

In rural Vietnam where she lives, it hasn’t been easy to make ends meet. As new parents, both Khuyen and her husband had to find temporary work where they could, doing labor on a farm or collecting honey in the nearby forest. Khuyen felt like she didn’t have enough time to be a good mom for her first child.

Then, their second son was born with malnutrition.

Khuyen and her child

“I wish I could have learned more, or at least have had more time to take care of my children,” she says.

Vietnam began shutting down in late January to prevent the spread of coronavirus, closing schools and restricting travel. During that time, many people couldn’t work, and markets were empty because food transportation was interrupted. Neither Khuyen nor her husband could find work because of the lockdown. All they had to eat is what they could grow.

Women farmer in Vietnam
Here, another woman in Vietnam makes her way to her farm. In rural areas of the country, life and daily activities are becoming more difficult because if COVID-19 — especially for farmers. 

But then Khuyen received a Livestock Gift from Plan. And now, she and her husband are able to finally provide nutritious meals for their children.

In addition to the animals, Livestock Gifts can also support training on livestock rearing and cooking; Khuyen has learned to make a new meal with freshly laid eggs.

“I just learned how to cook a new dish this morning for my kids, and they loved it!” Khuyen laughs. “This is the first time that my kids have eaten eggs since the start of the pandemic.”

Whether you give goats, piglets or the whole Barnyard Bundle, you’re giving more than just livestock; you’re providing a sustainable source of income. You’re filling hungry bellies and helping moms like Khuyen generate enough money to send their kids to school.

Woman with goats
Another woman like Khuyen is benefitting from the gift of livestock, here feeding her two goats. “It has made a huge difference.”

“Now, nothing can make me happier than seeing my children grow up healthy,” Khuyen says, smiling.

With one livestock gift, parents can feed their hungry children, make and sell products like milk and cheese and help move their entire communities forward.

Will you activate this kind of change?