Most Maasai live in extreme poverty, on $0.35 a day.
The International Poverty Line, as defined by the World Bank, is at $1.90 per person per day. The consequences of extreme poverty?
HUNGER: 90% of the Maasai people’s livestock were killed by starvation in 2009 when a severe drought hit the Amboseli region of Kenya. The Maasai maintain a traditional pastoral lifestyle, depending on their livestock for nutrition and source of income. Because of their reduced livestock, Maasai families and children are almost always hungry now. Many children eat only one meal a day.
EDUCATION: Extreme poverty also limits parents' ability to send their children to school. Although Kenya provides free primary public schools, parents still need to cover the costs of school uniforms and supplies. This is out of reach for most Maasai families. Lack of education then reinforces the vicious cycle of poverty and sustains harmful practices like female genital mutilation (FGM), as men and women remain uninformed about its true risks and consequences.
EARLY MARRIAGE: Hunger, and the inability to adequately provide for their children, increases the pressure on parents to marry their daughters off when they are still young girls. When girls marry, they leave their family home and go to live with their husbands. Parents often genuinely believe that, because of the extreme poverty in which they live, their daughters will be better off in a husband's house than staying at home. Because of this, Maasai girls are often married by the time they are 14 or 15 years old.
In 2009, Coins for Change identified a new breed of goat, the Galla goat, that produces 4 cups of milk per day, which is 4x as much milk as the traditional East African goat.
18 Galla goats were purchased in Somalia and brought to the Maasai to see if they could survive the harsh Amboseli conditions. They flourished!
The Galla goats now provide life-sustaining nutrition for Maasai children and families. Although the mineral content of the milk is similar to that of cow’s milk, Galla goat milk contains 13% more calcium, 25% more Vitamin B6, 47% more Vitamin A, and 134% more Potassium. The goats also give milk and offspring that can be sold to help pay for expenses, such as a child’s education.
A goat is a gift that keeps on giving.
Coins for Change has donated over 1,000 Galla goats
Over 1,000 goats have now been donated to Maasai families and villages through Coins for Change. Every year, Coins for Change buys the Galla goats’ offspring from a Maasai village and gives another village 20 goats.
“I thank Coins for Change as it has helped to raise my family economic activity. Before we did not have even a single goat, but now we are enjoying sufficient goat-milk from the goats I got through Coins for Change support.” – A Maasai family
Donate a Goat today!
The Maasai tribe is spread out over a very large area and there are still many families in needs of Galla goats. Each Galla goat costs $60, and even just one can make a big difference to a family.
To donate a Galla goat and change a family’s life today, please click here. No donation is too small or too big. Thank you for caring!
Adopt a Boma (Maasai Village) today!
By adopting a boma (Maasai village), you help provide it with the cows and goats necessary to sustain and nourish the families living there, and help to pay school fees for the village children. Generous donors have already adopted 6 bomas, but there are many more that need your help!
To adopt a boma and help alleviate the extreme poverty that afflicts Maasai villages, please click here. No donation is too small or too big. Thank you for caring!
Become a part of something bigger!
Help lessen the heavy burden that extreme poverty places on Maasai families. Children and families go hungry every day, and this needs to stop. Provide them with nutrition and additional income that can help them pay for their children's education.
Alleviating poverty will help give Maasai girls the opportunity and freedom to gain an education and the skills to build a better future for themselves, their families and their communities.
100% of every dollar generated online goes directly into our programs to help rescue Maasai girls from female genital mutilation (FGM) and early marriage.