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Does giving people in Third World countries goats and chickens actually help them?

 
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I've noticed that many charities have ways of donating chickens &/or goats to the impoverished in other countries. But, does this actually help?

I mean, I have a flock of ducks. I have to buy a lot of feed. I barely break even, if that. I have five acres of lush greenery. It seems the story is much the same for many of us First World people when we try to raise small livestock. So, when we give people in other countries a goat or chicken, does it actually help them, or just give them another mouth to feed? If it does help them, then why is it that they can raise goats and chickens and have their state of living improved, yet we struggle so much here in First World countries just to break even?
 
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Um, don't you mean Underdeveloped countries, rather than Third world countries?
There is a huge difference.

First world countries are aligned to NATO
Second world countries are aligned with the Warsaw Pact.
Everybody else are third world countries.

Some 3rd world countries (Switzerland, Sweden, the Vatican for example) have very high standards of living.

 
Nicole Alderman
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I actually had no idea about the definitions between the terms! Thanks for clarifying that. I meant underdeveloped countries .
 
John Polk
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Back to your original question, I do believe that it helps these people.

Goats forage on plants that humans won't eat, on land that cannot be cultivated.
Chickens do likewise, plus eat a lot of insects, grains found on the ground, and kitchen scraps.

Even chickens that are commercially grown are 'thrifty'.
Four pounds of feed will produce a dozen eggs (3 1/2 pounds with white Leghorns).
Chicken eggs are one of the cheapest forms of animal protein, especially if they can forage for themselves.

Most poor people are unable to afford proteins.
These animals provide about their only hope of providing protein to their children.

 
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John Polk wrote:
Goats forage on plants that humans won't eat, on land that cannot be cultivated.



Turning it into desert.

 
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Yeah, that was kind of what I'm worried about . I mean, goats cause mass-destruction where I live, and we have a LOT of greenery for them to eat, and usually can afford to fence them. How much land do these impoverished have? How much time and calories will they expend either herding a goat or trying to make fencing for it? In arid regions, I have to imagine there's even less for the goats to eat than there is here, and they'd have to keep impregnating the goat somehow to keep the milk flowing, so they'd have to at least be feeding a Mama and kid  

Johns point about animals providing protein is a really good point. And, milk or eggs can also prove to be trade items to help bring someone out of poverty. But, does it outweigh the downsides, or are the better ways to help?

Thinking of better ways to help, are there good permaculture charities that teach people how to farm in a ecologically sustainable way?

 
Tyler Ludens
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Farmer Managed Natural Regeneration teaches people how to grow trees while also raising livestock.  The livestock are penned away from the trees, and branches are cut and brought to the animals.  

http://fmnrhub.com.au/

https://www.worldvision.com.au/global-issues/work-we-do/famine/aussie-spirit-fuels-africas-greatest-transformation

This is the way I am keeping my sheep presently, because they have been so destructive to the trees here.
 
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Tyler Ludens wrote:

John Polk wrote:
Goats forage on plants that humans won't eat, on land that cannot be cultivated.



Turning it into desert.



I would imagine it depends on the amount of goats and their management.  In some situations, goats could actually increase soil fertility and reduce desertification - if managed correctly.  
 
Tyler Ludens
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It's difficult to find examples of goats reducing desertification.  I've seen examples of cattle being used that way, supposedly emulating bison.

Here's one article I found about goats helping grasslands, where there are no other trees for them to eat but juniper:  http://jornada.nmsu.edu/blog/goats-helping-ecosystem
 
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