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I’ll do it, but only if you’ll help

Pledge “kenyanorphans”

"I will donate £10 towards building an irrigation system at a vegetarian orphanage in Kenya but only if 200 other people will do the same."

— Chris Anderson

Deadline to sign up by: 1st January 2006
203 people signed up (3 over target)

Country: United Kingdom

More details
We would like to raise £2000 for the extension of the irrigation system at the vegetarian orphanage in Kenya. This would enable a further 5 acres of land to be used for vegetable production.

HIPPO is involved in projects mostly in Africa (Ethiopia, Kenya, Malawi, Nigeria, and Uganda), but also sends vegan food aid to Russia, Bosnia, and Croatia. Requests for information about HIPPO's past and current activities are welcome. Donations should be in the form of cheques made payable to HIPPO, or details for direct payment to our bank account will be provided on request. Our address for all enquiries and donations is: HIPPO, The Old Vicarage, Llangynog, Carmarthen SA33 5BS, U.K. and our email address is

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Comments on this pledge

  • I like the idea of the £10 gift. It's an affordable amount, and that's a good strategy: Philanthropy in Small Steps, I call it:
  • Hey

    I would love to make donations as part of some Xmas presents for friends and family. Is that something that can be done? (i.e. a certficate saying 'a donation has been made in your name...')
    Kenton Lewis, 14 years ago. Abusive? Report it!
  • Hi Kenton

    I have asked Neville from HIPPO if this is possible. Unfortunately, this is a very busy time for them and they cannot produced certificates like this.
  • Emil Mianssian
    Emil Minassian, 14 years ago. Abusive? Report it!
  • My wife just cancelled her direct debit to Oxfam after seeing an advert with a goat wrapped up in Christmas paper. The whole 'send a cow' thing is crazy and exasperating the situation - more mouths needing food and water not less.

    We have more crops than ever before but more than ever is being fed to animals - 95% of US soya goes to feeding animals.

    Hippo and Vegfam have real solutions.
  • If people want to give pledges as presents, why can't they create their own certificate?
    Gill Redfearn, 14 years ago. Abusive? Report it!
  • I so agree with Tony Bishop-Weston. I heard someone from Oxfam on the radio blithely talking about ordering these goats and just shipping them off to wherever as though they were a box of Apple I-Pods. I was appalled.

    HIPPO is a great initiative - Good Luck with it - the cheque is in the post (or it will be tomorrow!)
    Sam Covington, 14 years ago. Abusive? Report it!
  • I assume that the livestock in the Oxfam programme will be purchased through local programmes to ensure they are adapted to local conditions, quite apart from any animal welfare considerations. I think it unlikely they'll be consuming much US soya - in the absence of evidence to the contrary they're more likely to be consuming local forage (and projects should have been evaluated from an environmental impact point of view as well).

    Perhaps the Oxfam spokesperson was addressing the issue in rather superficial terms to communicate with a general audience in the UK but Oxfam partners on the ground are not stupid.

    And the idea that the image of a goat wrapped in Christmas gift paper should be seen as communicating the idea that abuse of animals is the essence of the project makes about as much sense as would my interpreting the use of Hippo's hippo as a celebration of the hippo's responsibility for killing more humans in Africa every year than any other large mammal.

    In fact Hippo sounds a very worthwhile project.
    Owen Beith, 14 years ago. Abusive? Report it!
  • The following is taken from the Animal Aid website, giving its main arguments against donating to these schemes:

    "The festive season is approaching - full of celebrations, parties, fun and laughter. Everyone is looking for present ideas that are slightly different from the norm and ethical gifts have become increasingly popular over the last couple of years.

    Animal Aid is asking people to think twice before donating money to charities that supply 'developing' countries with live animals. There are much better, more economical and efficient ways of helping.

    Farming animals is a wasteful, unsustainable and expensive way of producing food. Supplying cows and goats to impoverished people with limited resources just adds to their burden. All farmed animals require proper nourishment, yet surely it is not sensible to devote agricultural resources to feeding animals when they could be used to feed people.

    Animals also consume large quantities of drinking water - a precious commodity that, in much of Africa, is in critically short supply. The evidence from such schemes to date indicates that the animals are often kept in highly challenging circumstances, which leads to a great deal of sickness and early death.

    Poorer countries do not need aid in the form of live animals. They require sustainable, drought-resistant crops."
  • As a charity fundraiser myself I love how you've used Pledgebank. What a fantastic idea! Keep up the good work.
  • If you're against animal exploitation in principle then that is a valid objection to schemes like the Oxfam one, but you should make that stance explicit and not resort to sweeping generalisations about development needs.

    You can't bring in an argument like "Supplying cows and goats to impoverished people with limited resources just adds to their burden." without implying not only that the aid agencies concerned are stupid but also that impoverished people who keep livestock are also stupid. Is that what AnimalAid is actually saying?

    Poorer countries certainly do need sustainable, drought-resistant crops (where poverty is in fact drought-related). But that doesn't mean they don't also need properly cared-for livestock or for that matter good schemes for irrigated vegetable production.
    Owen Beith, 14 years ago. Abusive? Report it!
  • Supplying animals to third-world countries can be a great help, but the key is good training and research. This is why I like Send A Cow. The prices they quote for their animals includes months of training for the recipetents (including water management and crops that are economical, ie those not suitable for human consumption.) Before donating the animal they always ascertain that there are proper living quarters for that animal and that all members of the family are involved in caring for it,in case of the death of the head of the household. Animals are carefully allocated to families so that it suits their needs, abilities and land.
    Send A Cow is a charity that is involved full-time in this sort of donation; therefore they has the necessary expertise to deal with it. They are not jumping on the bandwagon, as so many other charities have done lately. They have 20 years experience in this field. Don't let other organisations' irresponsibility put you off the fantastic work they do.
    Hannah Simpson, 14 years ago. Abusive? Report it!
  • Without water there will be no more cows or any other animals.

    There will be no more people.

    Irrigation = Water= plants= food=shelter=oxygen=protection against desertification=very cost effective use of money for people and environment.

    Just weigh up the costs of send a cow and training vs irrigation and benefits.

    Especially look at the benefits come the next drought - SAC's advice? Sell the cow - hmmmm great long term strategy that one!

    Look at the devastation in Brazil from favouring cows over sustainable crops - recognise that landscape ??? more and more like Africa every day.

    The economics don't add up long term.

    This pledge could help many more people for a much longer period of time per £ - please support it.
  • Animal Aid has been challenged elsewhere on the issue of how impoverished people are to obtain adequate supplies of vitamin B12 – a nutrient that is naturally present in animal products but less obviously so in plants foods.

    Foods such as flour and margarine can be fortified with B12 and there is the additional option of vitamin pills. In fact, while plants cannot synthesise B12 themselves, recent research has discovered that they can absorb it from the soil. The B12 content of soil (and the corresponding B12 content of the plants grown in it) is affected by differences in organic matter, soil type and amount of microbial life. Much more research needs to be done, but it may prove possible to obtain healthy levels of the vitamin from plants alone that have been fertilised with treated human manure (Such manure - a sane and practical answer to the human waste problem - is used for plants in many parts of the world).

    If none of these options can be taken up by impoverished populations, then - instead of sending cows and goats -
    aid packages of vitamin supplements can be provided.

    The substantial cost of breeding animals and training local people to care for them, along with the continuing cost of feeding and providing water and veterinary cover for the animals, is an incomparably bigger logistical and economic challenge than getting B12 into the diet.
  • Your pledge (although already closed) inspired me to use pledgebank to try and help an orphans' School I already support in Uganda. If anyone who has helped with this pledge is interested in my new pledge please search for UgandanSchool on the site and read more.
    Thank You
    Joy Howell
    Joy Howell, 14 years ago. Abusive? Report it!
  • I have still had no reply from HIPPO about their bank details, no answer on their phone either, so please can someone who has their bank details supply them for us?
    Also is there a way of paying this by Gift Aid?

    Lesley Dove
    Lesley Dove, 14 years ago. Abusive? Report it!
  • having just received an e mail prompt from this site, I have discovered that the suggestion on my e mail of 17th Jan for searching for my pledge to support a ugandan orphans' school will NOT work, so please try search for Uganda
    Joy Howell, 14 years ago. Abusive? Report it!
This pledge is closed for new comments.

Current signatories (Green text = they've done it)

Chris Anderson, the Pledge Creator, joined by:

  • Catherine Cardin
  • Paul Maxwell
  • vick bonner
  • Jez Smith
  • Adriana Guevara
  • Marina Asvachin
  • Sophie Clements
  • wayne bartlett
  • Nick Drake
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  • Philip Duncan Repper
  • Ken Allgood
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  • Thayne
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  • Colin C. Venters
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  • Deborah Andrews
  • linuxgirlie
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  • Chris Campbell
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  • Malcolm Door
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  • Sharon Hopkins
  • Annly, Ho
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  • Ewan Delany
  • adrian p
  • Paul Cain
  • Kelly Slade
  • Fiona
  • Roy Thompson
  • Lucie Slade
  • sundari Poorun
  • will donate 700 p0unds for building an irrigation system at the vegeterian orphanage in Kenya
  • Lara Celini
  • Rebecca Bird
  • Margaret Reid
  • Gerald Dawson
  • Andrea Grimson
  • Fred
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