Map of Ethiopia

Transforming Lives

A women’s care group gathers to discuss health and nutrition practices.

In the highlands of Ethiopia, malnutrition affects 44 percent of children under 5, and as many as 81 percent of all cases of child undernutrition go untreated.

USAID beneficiaries stand in front of a mango tree and sugarcane plants.

In the highlands of Amhara, Ethiopia, nearly 700 kilometers from the country’s capital, families often do not know where their next meal is coming from. In the drought-prone region of northeastern Amhara, households have difficulty accessing basic necessities of food and water due to extreme topography and scarce water resources.

So that she could stay in school, 13-year-old Fiker Tenaw refused a marriage planned for her by her parents.

Like many developing countries, the practice is widespread in Ethiopia, even though it is unlawful and punishable. This is particularly so in the Amhara Region where the prevalence is among the highest in the world as reflected in a 2010 Population Council study showing that almost 50 percent of girls were married before the age of 15 and some married as early as age 7.

Melesse Yohannes uses his “Rough Rider” wheelchair to go out and buy supplies for his shoe-making and repair shop.

Living with a disability often means facing discrimination, exclusion from mainstream society, and a formidable range of physical obstacles. For most of the more than 7 million Ethiopians living with disabilities, simply getting around usually requires assistance from family or friends, while earning a real income and having financial independence remain unattainable dreams.

Nurse aids who work at Hamlin Fistula Center in Bahir Dar, Ethiopia.

In 1988, Mesaye*, a 15-year-old girl from North Gondor, Ethiopia, began to have contractions and knew that the birth of her first child was near. Unfortunately, like so many other young mothers whose bodies have not matured enough to safely give birth, Mesaye experienced an excruciating four days of labor that ended in a stillbirth.

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Last updated: April 22, 2016

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