Calf and Rural Scheme

Since 1984, farmers have supported IHC by donating to the IHC Calf and Rural Scheme. Today, with the help of around 4,000 generous farmers, the Scheme raises more than $1 million each year for IHC.

Colin Meads – nothing but the best

Colin Meads never stopped looking for ways to make life better for people with intellectual disabilities. IHC was privileged to have the support of the big man since 1974.

Read the full story 

Calf Scheme Photo Competition 2017

New Zealand has some of the most beautiful farming country in the world and some of the best livestock.

Why not grab your camera and see if you can capture a great shot for our photo competition?

We will choose one winner from each of the following age groups:

  • 7 years and under
  • 8 to 12 years
  • 13 to 18 years
  • Over 18 years

We would love to see photos of your pledged calves, other calves, farming scenes, rural scenes, or anything particularly ‘New Zealand’.

There can be people in your photograph (as long as they give you permission), animals, or you can simply capture some stunning scenery.

You can enter as many times as you like.

Please send entries by Friday 15 December 2017 to along with:

  • Your name
  • Age
  • Contact phone number
  • And also please confirm that you took the photograph yourself, and that any people in the photo have given permission for the image to be used by IHC.

The winner of each category will receive a $100 Prezzy Card, and we will notify the winners by Friday 8 December 2017.

The winners’ photographs will also be published in the Autumn 2017 IHC Calf & Rural Scheme newsletter.

Photographs entered into the competition may be used by IHC for promotional purposes.

About the IHC Calf and Rural Scheme

The idea behind the Calf Scheme was dreamed up by Taranaki farmer Norm Cashmore, who offered a pair of gumboots to every farmer donating a calf to the Taranaki branch of IHC. 

Blenheim dairy farmer Mick Murphy heard about it. He went north to see Norm’s idea in action and decided it would work nationally. Mick was involved in the Marlborough branch of IHC and owned a dairy farm near Blenheim. He knew cows, but he had to convince the hesitant members of the fundraising committee of the New Zealand Council of IHC to give the idea a go.

In 1983, Mick was given permission for a pilot project in eight branches. Farmers were asked to donate calves to IHC and, in return, they were given a pair of gumboots. By the end of the trial, 770 calves donated by farmers had raised $110,000. The following year, the scheme was launched nationwide. 

The scheme was expanded in 2008 to include all livestock to enable sheep and beef farmers to donate part of the proceeds from the sale of their livestock to IHC.

In the 2015/16 season, almost 4,000 farmers helped raise $1.2 million for IHC. 

IHC in the rural community

Founded in 1949 by a group of parents unhappy with the lack of opportunities for their children with intellectual disabilities, IHC has always had a visible presence in rural communities. There is a strong IHC community in rural regions through residential homes, day bases, and IDEA Services facilities. 

Within a few years of its inception, IHC had branches all around the country, and this continues today. IHC is in your community – from Whanganui to Westland, Southland to South Taranaki, Counties to Clutha.

IHC’s fundraising activities pay for programmes to enhance the quality of life of people with intellectual disabilities and their families. Programmes paid for by fundraising are running, or have run, in areas shown in the map below. Advocacy services and the library are available wherever you are in New Zealand.

The IHC Calf and Rural Scheme is one of the ways we connect with the rural community, and raise money to support people with intellectual disabilities in those communities. 

How does the IHC Calf & Rural Scheme work?

The IHC Calf and Rural Scheme is the only large-scale rural fundraising programme of its kind in New Zealand. Participating farmers can donate

  • a weaned farm animal (bull calf, heifer, steer, or cull cow, sheep, lamb, goat, deer) with proceeds from sales going directly to IHC
  • a “virtual” calf (which is a donation of $300 in lieu of a calf)
  • the average price from the local IHC sale. You will be notified of the price after sale.


PGG Wrightson is now proud to take this support one step further by helping IHC to expand the Scheme. Now all farmers can donate to the scheme – not just dairy. 

This can be done through

You can donate: cull cow, steer, bull, heifer, calf, bale of wool, lamb, sheep, goat, deer or a virtual animal.

Canvassers and Transport

We rely heavily on the people who support the IHC Calf and Rural Scheme. Without their tremendous support, we would not be where we are today.

If you are interested in canvassing for donations to the IHC Calf and Rural Scheme, or if you can provide transport or paddocks for calves in transit, please contact us on 0800 442 500 or

Please help people with intellectual disabilities in your community.


Pledge today

Supporter Zone

We rely heavily on the people who support the IHC Calf and Rural Scheme. Without their tremendous support, we would not be where we are today.

A huge thank you to our:




The final day of #fieldday2016 . A big thanks to Allflex for donating the IHC Calf & Rural Scheme pink calf ear tags.

A photo posted by IHC New Zealand (@ihcnewzealand) on

Sale Dates


Paeroa IHC Dairy Beef - 12pm - Friday 20 October
Rangiuru IHC Livestock Wnr - 12pm - Wednesday 1 November
Frankton IHC Dairy - 12.30pm - Monday 6 November
Taranaki IHC Calf - 12pm - Thursday 9 November 
Tuakau IHC Dairy Beef Wnr Fair - Friday 10 November
Waiareka IHC Calf - 10.00 am - Monday 27 November
Wellsford IHC Wnr - 12pm - noon Monday 27 November 
Kaikohe IHC Wnr - 12:30pm - Wednesday 29 November
Blenheim Open Cattle & IHC Calves - 11.00am - Wednesday 29 November  
Golden Bay IHC Calf    - Thursday 30 November
Manawatu / Wairarapa Feilding IHC Wnr - 11.30am - Thursday 30 November
Brightwater IHC Calf - 12pm - Wednesday 6 December 
Canterbury Park IHC Calf - 12pm - Wednesday 6 December
Lorneville IHC Livestock - 11am - Wednesday 6 December
Temuka IHC Wnr Calf - 12pm - Thursday 14 December
Ross Cattle & IHC Calf - 12pm - Wednesday 24 January  2018
IHC Balclutha Calf - 10.30am - Wednesday 31 January 2018
Stortford Lodge    To be arranged by Dale, when 10 or more calves ready

Sales results to date


We at IHC would like to celebrate with all our wonderful farmers and supporters the great news about our sales.  We would also like to say a big THANK YOU to you all; for the farmers that sent calf/calves to sale you have all done such a great job getting the IHC calves into such a good condition and this has reflected in our wonderful prices.

 We have achieved excellent averages this season; please see below the results of each sale to date.



100 calves sold for an average of $415.15

Last season our average was $412.60


240 calves sold for an average of $430.67

Last season our average was $382.82


509 calves sold for an average of $463.63

Last season our average was $418.97

Taranaki / Stratford 

251 calves sold for an average of $447.32

Last season our average was $394.08 & 2nd sale $419.39


46 calves sold for an average of $493.04

Last season our average was $440.77


We still have some calves from the above areas that are still on farm, we understand due to unforeseen circumstances that the calf may not have been ready, or there may have been a transport issue.  We will make contact with you in the near future or if you prefer you can contact Sharlene on 0800 442 500 so arrangements can be made to get it off to the next sale.

We at IHC would like to acknowledge the wonderful support from all our farmers either through pledging a calf or making a donation.  Your ongoing support is so very important.