Ethiopiaid Monitoring Trip Diary 2017- DEWADA
Posted by Francesca Rutherford on Saturday 25th March 2017
Read what our team has beeen up to in the latest instalment of their Trip Diary.
On Tuesday we met with the team at DEWADA our partner in central Addis working to support elders living in abject poverty. In 2016 Ethiopiaid supporters helped 1071 elders and 200 vulnerable orphans cared for by their grandparents.
Messih the Project Coordinator took us to a Woreda's pension collection day (a Woreda is similar to a parish in the UK). Thanks to our donors support we were able to increase our funding last year so that the elders monthly pension could be raised from 120 Birr to 200 Birr a month (that's just £7). This has enabled them to provide more than just the one meal of bread that they had been able to afford peviously. Extra funds for clothing were also given so that elders could have a new set of clothes to replace their filthy garments and retain a little dignity.
As we drew up to the Woreda office, albeit a little later than planned, we were greeted by 250 elders and young grandchildren who had waited on the hot dusty paving for over 2 hours to meet us. As we stepped from the car they gave a communal cry giving thanks to Ethiopiaid's donors for the help they have given. The elders crowded around to proudly show us their new sets of clothing and shake our hands. I spot four toddlers gripping their grandmothers hands and hiding behind their skirts. It was so very moving to think that so little has made such a difference to the lives of these incredibly courageous people.
Sadly the ongoing drought has a far reaching impact and its affects are felt here in the Woreda. Messih tells me that the cost of staple foods such as fresh fruit, vegetables, cereals and oil has increased so much as a result that even he struggles to afford them, let alone the elders. It is clear that despite the smiles I am witnessing, many people are struggling just as much as before, with many being forced to return to having just one meal of bread a day. As we watch them leave to go about their daily business I am left pondering how we can encourage more of our donors to support them, especially in times of extra hardship.
Lisa Cousins, Ethiopiaid UK
Addis Ababa, 23rd March 2017
This is the fourth of several posts Ethiopiaid will be sharing after each partner visit while in Ethiopia. Every year, as part of our monitoring and evaluation process, the directors of Ethiopiaid Australia, Ethiopiaid Canada, Ethiopiaid Ireland and Ethiopiaid UK travel to Ethiopia to meet with our partners to make sure we are creating lasting and effective change and that your donations are well spent. Watch this space for more blog updates!