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Goats and Cows Program for food Security and school fees

Maasai Association is fighting hunger through goats and cows, We are creating a self-reliance Maasai community. Click to see the latest pictures from our beneficiaries.

The aim of Goats and Cows Program is to empower Maasai families with a gift of a cow or goat used for milk and school fees.

The Maasai people depend on goats and cows for a living. To a Maasai, having a goat is like having money or a bank account for an American. A goat is an asset as well as an operating budget. This is the wisest economic incentive a Maasai family can ever receive, as goats and cows hold the greatest value, more than anything else in the Maasai pastoral society.

Goals of the goats and cows program are to:

• Help drought victims to rebuild their lives after a severe drought
• Make milk and cheese available to low-income families and their children
• Make school fees available for needy students attending primary and secondary schools

How does the program works?

A child in the U.S, for example, would contribute $30 (or $150 for a cow) to the Cows and Goats Fund Program. The Maasai Association program coordinator in Kenya will travel to the local trading market and purchase either a goat or cow. The animal will be placed in a home – preferably a low-income family’s home. The beneficiary family will take care of the goat or cow free of charge.

There are two parts to the goat program, dairy goats and billy goats. The dairy goat is for the production of milk and baby goats. The billy goats are for generating income, mainly, for school fees.

At the end of one year a goat is projected to have produced an offspring. The first goat offspring will remain a property of the Maasai Association. As with Maasai tradition, the caretaker family will keep the second offspring.

Breeding of dairy goats

In the Maasai community goats are not bred all year around. The breeding usually takes place three months before the rainy season (July or August). The gestation period is usually three months long. Birth can result in goat twins, depending on the breed. The program coordinator will make sure to buy goats of great quality – preferably Siolo goats. This is a drought tolerant breed of goats that produce more milk than any other breed of goats in the region. Siolo goats are highly trusted by the local people. The expansion of the goat program will depend on the increased number of goats in the program. More goats mean more milk and more students in school.


The Maasai Association has a program coordinator in the project area. The coordinator monitors the program as follows:

• Make sure the breeding of goats and cows happens as planned
• Make sure the goats and cows are well taken care of by the beneficiary family
• Make sure to vaccinate and brand goats and cows as needed
• Make sure school fees are paid as promised

Sustainability of this program

The goat program is highly sustainable for the reason that goats are extremely valued and trusted by the Maasai people. The output, milk and school fees, from the goat program are much greater than the inputs such as breeding and vaccinations. The villagers do not need to have collateral to qualify for the goat and cows program. The program is all about trust and commitment between the villagers and the Maasai Association.

The most unique aspect about this program is that it is a community-based initiative from beginning to end. The program respects and compliments local traditions and systems for livestock keeping and management.

The distribution and management of cows is the same as with the goats. The cost for a goat is $40 while the cost for a cow is $150.

Click here to give a Maasai family a life-changing cow or goat.



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Graphic design, data architecture, technical implementation by Ole Maimai,

Make a tax-deductible gift to Maasai Association.

American kids are helping to fight hunger in Africa!

Sam Nordstrom, a fifth grader, and his colleagues including Andrea, Sara, Niccolo, and Leigh supported the initial stage of the Goats and Cows program for Maasai families and their children. Many other well-wishers stepped forward and made significant donations to insure the success of this worthwhile program. Click to see how you can help.


Andrea is a proud supporter of Maasai Association programs.


This program is ideal for teachers looking to connect students with kids in Africa. The program is also perfect for families looking to contribute to a good cause in Africa. Tell your friends about us and see if they too would be interested in supporting this cause.