Saturday, September 5, 2015

Step Into My World: Southern Ethiopia

It's back to Ethiopia we go! This time, we head to Southern Ethiopia.

I have one "child" in the Southern region of Ethiopia.


Compassion's projects in Southern Ethiopia lie mainly in the tan region seen at the bottom of this map.

Southern Ethiopia is one of the poorest regions in the country. This region is plagued by food insecurity, due to unstable farming conditions, caused by drought and unhealthy soil. Most families in this area rely solely on farming to support their families and meet the needs of their kids. Unfortunately, most families only grow enough food to feed their families for 6 months out of the year. After that, families must scrounge for money anyway they can, whether by selling items on the street or traveling for long distances to find jobs.

Most families in this area are small, compared to the size of families in other regions of Ethiopia and in the surrounding African countries. Families typically consist a mother, father, and 2-3 children. Though, homes are still small. They are typically small, round or rectangular, one room huts. These huts are usually made of wood and and other materials that can either be found or purchased for very cheap. 

In Southern Ethiopia schools are overcrowded and underfunded. Schools are small, yet have so many students enrolled that not all students can attend at the same time. Enrolled children are split in half and attend school in 4-hour shifts, one group in the morning and one in the afternoon. Even with these two separate groups, each teacher still has a class of around 75 children at a time. This makes it virtually impossible for children to have one-on-one attention from their teacher. Learning in this environment is very difficult. Thankfully, Compassion provides educational follow-up and tutoring at the project. 

On top of educational learning, Compassion also provides it's enrolled children in a variety of classes that can teach them skills they can use in the future. One of these classes is in handicrafts, where children can learn to make jewelry to sell and earn money for their families. 

Sadly, with parents having to work long hours to support their families, children are left home alone. This often leads to children spending a lot of time alone, often wandering the streets. 

Compassion does it's best to remedy that situation by providing children a safe place to place, off the streets and away from danger. Children get to spend time playing games with their friends and having a wonderful time together. 

Children are taught about God and are encouraged to pray for themselves, their families, their friends, and their country. 

The projects in Southern Ethiopia have the following prayer requests for their projects: 

- That children will develop confidence in themselves and believe that they can be successful.

- That parents will find steady, good-paying jobs that enable them to adequately provide for their families. 

- For God's protection over children from life-threatening, such as malaria. 

- That children will stay in school and succeed in their academic pursuits. 

Here are two sweet children from Southern Ethiopia who are waiting for a sponsor: 

Don't you love her outfit?!

This is Sehabontu. She is 5 years old. Her birthday is November 24th, 2009. She lives with her parents and 4 siblings. Her father works odd jobs when he can find them and his mother takes care of the home. Sehabontu is not in school yet, but will start soon. Her favorite thing to do is play house with her friends. Her chores at home are cleaning and running errands. 

This beautiful boy is Kokeb. He is 6 years old. His birthday is January 28th, 2009. He makes his home with his father, mother, and 2 siblings. His father works as a farmer and his mother takes care of the home. Kokeb's chores are cleaning and running errands. For fun, he likes to play soccer and he likes to run. He has average performance in kindergarten. 

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