The three levels of impact and the Heifer hoofprint model are ways to describe impact that goes beyond the direct impact at the family level. The Heifer hoofprint is a metaphor of a traveling heifer leaving its tracks in the environment.
Deeper level, below-the-ground impact: These reinforce the positive personal values of the group; just as heifer hooves impact the ground, but not all chnages are seen (e.g., attitude and behavior changes of group members, their vision becomes broader and expands to the community rather than the self and family, there is increased community cohesiveness and internalization of Heifer values, etc.).
On-the-ground impact: These are tangible changes easily seen in communities, just like heifer tracks on the ground (e.g., increased income, better nutrition and physical health, more education, etc.).
External, above-the-ground impact: These are wider changes seen in the community and region, just as a heifer leaves its mark through broken tree branches nad brush (e.g., influencing local or national government development practices, replication of VBHCD with other organizations, recognition around community and region, etc.).
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