Heifer’s Golden Talent Award (GTA) recognizes an individual or family that has taken “a minimum of resources and converted it into a sustaining source of income and other resources, while also helping other families and the community at large.”
Golden Talent Awards are given annually, with the award presentation occurring in September or later, typically at a Country Project Partners’ Workshop or other significant in-country event. Staff from each Country Program determine their country’s winner. There may be one winner per country annually. A cash award of $1,000 is provided by Heifer International Foundation; $800 is for the project community and $200 is designated as a cash gift or in-kind gift to the family or individual.
2012 Golden Talent Award Winners
Kenya – Beatrice Auma Omengo
Beatrice Auma Omengo has trained close to 260 families in the Murumba area of Kenya in various aspects of social development, sustainable organic farming and dairy farming. She currently trains 1,000 farmers a month in farming and business practices.
Uganda – Jessica Were
Since 1986, Jessica Were has served the Butaleja District in Eastern Uganda. She set up a tree nursery bed, hosts training centers in her home, fosters biogas projects and helped secure funds for a dairy project from Heifer.
Cameroon – Achiri Christopher
A former carpenter turned farmer, Achiri Christopher is also a community leader in Bamendakwe, Cameroon. Through Heifer International Cameroon, he received a dairy cow and started training on January 4th, 2003. He is now secretary of his dairy cooperative, chairman of the development committee in his neighborhood and secretary of his Parish’s Justice and Peace Commission.
Tanzania – Daina Mangula
Heifer International helped Daina Mangula escape the poor living conditions she faced in a polygamous family. She is now a master farmer in her village of Ibumila and also also pioneered the Savings and Credit Cooperative Society in her village.
Rwanda – Uwimpuhwe Enice
When Uwimpuhwe Enice received her first gift from Heifer International-Rwanda, she was living in abject poverty. She has since learned to raise cattle, and donates manure and milk to those less fortunate. She has also passed on the gift to others in her village numerous times.
Peru – Delores Delgado
Dolores Delgado credits everything she has accomplished to her mother. Dolores’s mother taught her to raise guinea pigs, a skill she has improved upon and now teaches to her family and community. She used Agroecology to change the way guinea pigs are raised in her community of Huachancay in the Anta province of Peru.
China – Dang Que
Dang Que has dedicated his life to being a leader in the Jiumai village of the Shannan Prefecture of China for many years. He serves as branch secretary of the village, made a 5-year development plan for the village and assists his neighbors in attaining bank loans by taking loans in his name.
India – Basanti Hansda
Until Basanti Hansda joined Heifer India’s Tribal Empowerment program in 2010, she lived the life of a typical poor tribal woman in Mayurbhani, Odisha, India. She has passed on the gift to several community members and created awareness about the need for fresh vegetables and how to cultivate them in a small plot.
Bangladesh – Anjuara Begum
Thanks to the Jagorani Chakra Foundation, with funding by Heifer, Anjuara Begum has gone from living hand to mouth to providing her family and neighbors with goats. She formed the Uttorpara Mohila Swamity with 16 other women in 2009 and continues gifting extra goats to others in her community.
Cambodia – Son Sinath
In the village of Dak Sorsor, in the Battambang province, Son Sinath has become a leader that emphasizes literacy as a way to end poverty. As a Community Literacy Facilitator she meets with 24 women there times a week for 2 hours to teach them literacy skills and the 12 Heifer Cornerstones.
Nepal – Bali Khadka
Bali Khadka plays decisive and participatory roles in almost all aspects of community building in Bhringi, Pyuthan, Nepal. She serves as president of Prajwalit Social Women Entrepreneurial Cooperative Limited and her village’s para-legal group that fights for the rights of vulnerable groups.
Philippines – Minda Sinagan
Minda Sinagan’s determination to succeed helped her earn a degree in Elementary Education. This determination later became a lesson for others in her community. She is currently the president of Aurora Swine Raisers and Farmer’s Association.
Vietnam – Nguyen Van Hanh
Nguyen Van Hanh, despite only having an 8th grade education, is the group cashier of the Self Help Group of Binh Hoa hamlet. He manages funds and loans given to members of the community, often passing up his turn to receive a loan so that others may receive them.
Georgia – Maia Khabazishvili
Following in her late husband’s footsteps, Maia Khabazisvili became project leader and chairman of the Tkviavi Farmer’s Association in 2010. She currently leads 385 project participants who are rebuilding their village after the devastation of the 2008 Russia-Georgia conflict.
Romania – Angela Matis
When Angela lost her father at 10 years old, she became a second mother to her four younger sisters. She is now a second mother to the entire village of Rasca, Romania. She constantly researches government subsidies and other funding sources and helps others apply. She also hosts practical weaving classes in her home during the winter months.