Menschen für Menschen Switzerland is focused on stopping impoverishment in towns and rural areas
and on creating livelihood opportunities.
There are several ways you can help people in Ethiopia. Here you will find all donations with concrete examples.
Cradle of humanity, country of origin of coffee, rich culture and poor families. Over 100 million people live here: A visit to a contradictory country.
In Ethiopia, many families of the Afar people roam the savannah as nomads. But overgrazing and climate change are taking their toll on the traditional life of the herders.
Nowhere is it hotter than in north-eastern Ethiopia. Time and again, the vegetation dries up. The ground is covered in dust.
This is where the Afar live. In the past, they were considered a combative people. Today, young men compete with each other only with their hairstyles.
The girls also adorn themselves with elaborate hairstyles. Most of them have never been to school, because the Afar live as nomads.
The herder families move through savannahs and semi-deserts. Climate change intensifies the droughts – often the cattle starve and die of thirst.
The Awash River and its tributaries are the lifelines. But crocodiles lurk in the water. Sometimes people are killed.
Geja Muhammed lives with her family in the Subuli area by the Arso River. Tattoos decorate her face. The incisors are filed pointy – a sign of beauty for the Afar.
The huts made of branches, plastic sheets and grass mats can be packed and rebuilt in another location. Camels and goats are the only valuable possessions.
Practice makes perfect: from childhood, people’s lives are linked to cattle.
Even the young children help to herd the goats. They separate the mothers from their fawns and bring them to separate fences.
Because the fawns are not supposed to drink all the milk of their mothers. The milk is needed for the people.
When almost all the goats died in the recent drought, Geja Muhammed’s family was threatened with hardship and hunger.
Menschen für Menschen built a dam and canals on the Arso river.
The savannah can be irrigated. Agriculture becomes possible.
Geja Muhammed’s family received a piece of land and training. Her husband cultivates the field as a part-time farmer.
“Now we feel safe,” he says. “We don’t have to be afraid of another drought.”
The herd has recovered. The family has about 40 goats. They don’t know the number for sure, they say.
“Afar don’t count their animals,” says Geja. If you count them, according to popular belief, you run the risk of losing the animals again.
Thanks to livestock and agriculture, the Afar children of Subuli now have the chance to develop healthy.
About the project
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