Map of Ethiopia

Transforming Lives

Nefisa and her husband with their 2-week-old daughter.

Five years ago, Nefisa Hassen, a 24-year-old farmer from Ethiopia, had her first child at home. The labor and birth were prolonged and difficult. She prayed that, when her time came to deliver, she wouldn’t have complications forcing her to go to the health center. She could not handle the pity of her neighbors if she was unable to have a normal birth, and she wasn’t certain her husband could cover the cost of transportation to the facility.

Ethiopia Clean Water

You are thirsty. Now imagine walking six hours round trip, only to reach dirty water at your destination. That’s what Semegn Mikir did every day just to acquire water for her family in Ethiopia. Mikir is the mother of a 2-year-old daughter and lives in the rural Lay Gayint district in Taria Georgies village.

Marimaro Youth Group benefiting from area closures

July 2014—Rather than pursue a risky migration abroad, or simply become resigned to a life of extreme poverty, landless youth in a chronically food insecure district in Ethiopia are staying in their families’ villages, while also earning an income. How?

Four-year-old Bahiru in his new wheelchair.

In Ethiopia, 7.37 million people living with disabilities face challenges related to discrimination, exclusion from mainstream society, and extreme poverty. In addition, the physical environment is hostile to people with disabilities, including inaccessible roads and few sidewalks anywhere in the city, ill-equipped transportation, schools, housing, workplaces and public facilities.

Four members of the Amharic team review lessons that are near completion.

With some 80 different ethnic groups and approximately 90 million people, providing quality education is the single biggest challenge and priority for Ethiopia’s Ministry of Education. A USAID-supported Early Grade Reading Assessment performed in 2010 revealed shockingly poor results in reading achievement. By the end of grade two, 34 percent of students were unable to read even one word and 48 percent of students scored a zero in comprehension. Teachers were not adequately trained to teach in ways that promote student learning. The lack of curriculum and textbooks, teacher’s guides, and supplemental reading materials exacerbated the low levels of achievement.

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Last updated: December 17, 2014

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