It’s typical to find the parking lot filled with church vans at Heifer Ranch. Groups pay their way to experience lives of poverty in the Global Village. They come from all over. They come from many different churches, not necessarily touting the same religious message.
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I asked assistant manager Diane Gunvalson why she thinks Heifer International attracts so many communities of faith. She sees a simple connection, “I think faith is all about hope, and Heifer is all about hope.”Heifer supports spirituality as an important component of the Heifer program, but not any particular church. One of the group’s 12 cornerstones is spirituality as a set of common beliefs about the value and meaning of life.
“The faith communities that come here are the ones who want to get out and make a difference for somebody else,” continued Gunvalson, “They want to get involved and they want to do something that actually creates a better life for somebody and gives somebody else that hope. And Heifer’s a good for that, because it really does.