I was at BCVA Congress a couple of years ago and, over the gala dinner, I had a chat with Andrew Cobner - then incoming BCVA president - about my involvement with Send a Cow as an ambassador, a member of the UK Board and as a veterinary advisor.
I remember him recalling the connection with Andrew Madel and it sparked a memory I had of him talking passionately about the work of Send a Cow at an Association of Veterinary Students (AVS) Congress at the RVC in 1998. He was such an amazing man… with an amazing ‘virtual’ Send a Cow herd.
But I’ll never forget picking up the call from Andrew Cobner a couple of months later when he told me that he’d set a fundraising target of £50,000 for Send Cow in the 50th year of BCVA. Robert Huey, CVO Northern Ireland, had joined me on the ‘Live Below the Line’ challenge a few years ago and it was on the back of that that he contacted me and said that we should do something to support Andrew’s BCVA £50k for 50yrs appeal.

Before I knew it, Robert had pulled together 5 CVOs (Robert, NI; Nigel, UK; Christianne, Wales; Sheila, Scotland and Martin, Republic of Ireland) to climb Slieve Donard, the highest peak in Northern Ireland on 18 May 2017.
 We were lucky to have great weather - not too warm and not too cool - and it stayed fairly dry while we marched up to the summit and back down to sea-level again in around 6hrs.
To date, we’ve raised over £4,500 to support the work of Send a Cow in Africa through the Slieve Donard ascent which involved a broader team in addition to the CVOs and the inflatable cow! It was a great day out and a lot of fun all for an amazing cause! Thanks to everyone who has contributed to the BCVA ‘£50k for 50yrs’ appeal.

Information on the transformative work of Send a Cow is available at www.sendacow.org. As Chrissie has mentioned, our vision is of ‘a confident and thriving rural Africa’ and our mission is ‘to give communities and families the HOPE and the MEANS to secure their own FUTURES from the land’