The United Methodist Men of Estherville made life better for a lot of people Thursday night when they donated $500 from their pancake suppers to the Centers Against Abuse and Sexual Assault.
Jeff Swalve, representing the UMM, presented the check to Jennifer Schiltz, CAASA Dickinson-Emmet County coordinator, and Amy Mauren, multicultural outreach coordinator.
A number of other organizations have benefited from proceeds from the pancake suppers, including $250 to the Estherville Ministerial Association's Community Christmas Project, $150 to the Emmet County food pantry and $500 to the Heifer Project, one of the UMM's missions.
According to Swalve, Heifer International gives a heifer to a family which in turn must give the offspring to another family. The program includes other milk-producing animals such as goats and sheep.
Swalve said Heifer International started in 1944 in Arkansas. It was Heifer International, in fact, that prompted the local UMM to start having pancake suppers in the 1970s. First done one or twice yearly, the suppers are now held every month from September through April. The suppers have been held the second Thursday of every month but starting January they will be held the second Wednesday from 5-7 p.m.
George Chipman, who was one of the original organizers of the pancake suppers, said Heifer International is in over 100 countries and over half of the states in the US. He said the man who started Heifer International started by passing out milk to people in the Spanish Civil War. The inspiration for Heifer International came when someone remarked that it would have been nice if they had their own cow.
Chipman said the first 12 heifers went to Peru in 1944 - three were named Faith, Hope and Charity.