We have just returned home after spending nearly 2 months in Ethiopia. During that time we have had 9 volunteers at the school, they stayed from 5 days to 5 weeks. Some were on their first visit others have been many times. Contributions were varied, as well as science and English, a farmer visited, a long term volunteer from Farmer2farmer, sponsored by Catholic Relief Society in Ethiopia and USAID. Also a lot of work was done during this time in the kindergarten. 3 volunteers worked over a 9 week period to really upgrade the teaching skills. The training has had a great impact and skills and ideas improved a huge amount.
The biggest change at the school was that we have finally started to implement our short course training. Our very first course was for 10 students, on food preparation. All the students are from families of our local partner organisation, one of whom has a disability herself and will be employed by the school when she completes her training. The students are currently on the work placement part of the course. They are spending 3 days a week in the 3 best hotels in the town. The other 3 days they continue with practical training, English skills, and civics/good working practice. We are also very fortunate to be supported by PUM, a Dutch training organisation. We have developed a good cooperation with them, and their train the trainer programmes as well. 2 trainers from PUM are expected to return at the end of April to help and advise us, local trainers and our second group of students. We would like to thank 2 generous foundations who have supported us in this project. One foundation financed the workshop construction and another is financing the installation of equipment, initial running costs as we develop the training programme. This has been a great boost to the progress of our project.
We have been supported by several organisations and fundraising efforts to install showers in the secondary school. This is encouraging young people to do more sport. Especially the girls are happier to have a shower after sport. All our staff also benefit from this facility and the girls are encouraged to stay at school for the whole month, as they have access to clean water to help them with hygiene. On the video you can also see our water cleaning system, also sponsored, which purifies well water to drinking quality via a water softener and an ultra-filtration unit.
Finally we would like to thank all our donors for their continuous and significant contributions. More than 60% of our funding comes from private individual such as yourself. Whatever the size of the donation, it all goes directly to the project and makes an impact directly on the future of 1400 young people and indirectly to their families, the 160 staff members at the school and any supporting workers, from the construction companies, the ladies who run our staff café and the neighbouring small garment company who makes the school uniforms
Thank you all again for your help and support and watch the video!