Student Association Raises Money to Purchase Cow For Charity
March 14, 2006
BLOOMINGTON, Ill. -- "If you would have told me two years ago that now I would be
raising money to buy a cow, I wouldn't have believed you," said Amee Patel of Buffalo
Grove, Ill., a junior psychology major at Illinois Wesleyan University.
However, as a third-year member of IWU's South Asian Student Association (SASA), Patel
is doing just that. Through a variety of fundraisers, the group hopes to purchase
a cow for a South Asian family through Heifer International, a charity that provides
needy families in developing countries with sustainable livestock, rather than consumable
goods, as a means of support.
The group must raise $500 to purchase a cow. Over the last month, close to $400 (enough
to purchase a goat and a water buffalo, Patel pointed out), has been raised. Patel
and Pat Halloran, a junior history and religion double major, co-chairs for the philanthropy
project, are enthusiastic about their progress. "It doesn't sound like a lot, but
for a penny drive, it really is," Halloran said.
According to Heifer International, the gift of a cow would provide a family with four
gallons of milk a day, more than enough to nourish their own family and share with
neighbors. A family can then increase its income by selling extra milk. Additionally,
a healthy cow can give birth to one calf each year. Because the recipient family
pledges to give their cow's offspring to other families in need, over time a single
cow can benefit an entire village.
Throughout the spring, SASA members will continue to collect money at tables outside
of the Bertholf Commons. The fundraising will culminate Sunday, May 7 with SASA FEST,
a recreational and cultural event on the IWU mini-quad (the area between Magill, Dodds
and Dolan halls and Harriett Fuller Rust House.)
The event, which is open to the public as well as all members of the IWU community,
will feature cultural music and food, as well as a Chinese yo-yo demonstration, a
cricket game, henna (dye traditionally used in India to elaborately decorate the body)
and a celebration of Holi, the festival of colors. The Holi celebration, which commemorates
a legend from Hindu mythology, will include the traditional colored powder and water
which celebrants of all ages throw on one another.
Heifer International was created as Heifers for Relief in 1944, when founder Dan West
returned to the U.S. after witnessing the destruction and hunger caused by the Spanish
Civil War. The first shipment sent 17 heifers from York, Penn., to Puerto Rico.
Over the last 60 years, Heifer International has helped millions of families in over
"We want to get the entire Illinois Wesleyan community involved with something we
can give as a whole," Patel said.
Contact: Rebecca Welzenbach, (309) 556-3181