Sometimes what we need in life is a helping hand. Many of us are faced with obstacles on a regular basis that prevent us from living to our fullest potential. In some cases, what we lack isn't something that will make or break us, but there are many people around the world that are deprived of their basic needs which can make survival difficult, let alone living a healthy, productive life.

Sometimes all it takes to turn things around is a small gesture, like the gift of a goat.

Take a moment and think back to when you brought your first goat home. Undoubtedly you had big plans for that animal along with dreams and goals you wished to accomplish. Maybe it was the milk you wanted to drink as a means of improving your own personal health or perhaps you intended to set out on a soap making endeavor. Whatever the case was, you had to start somewhere, that being with a goat.

While for us it may be simple enough to track down and buy a goat, the same cannot be said for everyone. In some places, a goat is an unattainable thing despite how wonderful it might be to have one. That is where organizations such as Oxfam America come into play. Oxfam America is working globally to fix problems such as poverty and hunger at the source by investing in people. Their goal is to save lives with lasting solutions that enable people to step up and take care of themselves in the long run. One of the ways they accomplish their goal is through the gift of goats.

The way the program works is that you browse different gifting options and essentially purchase a charitable gift that will be sent to a person or persons in need. We are not talking about a gift card to use at a local big box store but instead a sustainable gift that can be used in order to help a family learn to survive in the long term. Several gifting options include various farm animals, with goats being a popular choice.

For $50, one goat can be donated. Goats can also be donated in pairs for $100 or a tribe for $275. These goats will then be used to help those in poverty work to better themselves by raising these animals and benefiting from them in terms of fertilizer for growing crops and eventually the milk they produce as they are bred and the herd grows and thrives.

Dog Smile Sharing Cloud Happy

Photo: Oxfam America

Although you may read this and object to the thought of sending a goat halfway around the world, please note that this is not a solicitation. Instead, the reason for sharing this story is to offer up an opportunity to think back to our own lives and how that first goat made a difference for us. We all had to start somewhere, just as those in need that are being helped by Oxfam America.

Whether you bought your first goat cash or bartered for that animal, we've all been in a position where goats came into our lives and made us better. If that thought makes you smile and you are inclined to help another person have the same experience, that is great. However, if that is not something you wish to do at this time, merely take a moment to reflect on how far you've come since your goat ownership begun and allow yourself to find some joy in that.

Remember the good and the bad, the fun and the folly, and appreciate how far you've come. Take note, too, of how much we can truly accomplish with goats in our lives and be grateful that you're in a position to chase that dream. After all, life can be tough at times and we too easily lose track of the good, focusing on the bad instead.

If you have a goat outside your back door, things just might not be too shabby, and if you are inclined to share that feeling with someone else in the form of a gift, the opportunity exists to do so should you wish to seize it.

We all need a little help sometimes, and goats are an excellent way to truly build a continuous, viable plan for the future of yourself or someone in need.

What memories do you have of acquiring your first goat and how did you do so? What did you learn and how have you since grown? Let us know in the comments.