YOUR March peace mail from Ethiopia
My name is Dimi and I work at Act for Peace as the International Program Coordinator for Protection. I recently returned from visiting our partner in Ethiopia - the Ethiopian Orthodox Church Development and Inter-Church Aid Commission (EOC-DICAC).
I wanted to tell you about a special experience I had when visiting our partner, which would not have been possible without your kind support. While in Addis Ababa I attended a community event at our partner’s community centre. This centre is a hub for people to meet and work on projects, receive support, and make connections. The people who meet here are refugees from around the world, including Congo, Burundi, South Sudan, Sudan, Yemen, Somalia, and Eritrea; both men and women and across all ages.
The event I attended was a part of the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence (GBV), an international campaign to challenge violence against women and girls. The campaign runs annually from the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women to Human Rights Day, and in 2018, the theme was ‘End GBV in the world of work’, which aimed to raise awareness about violence perpetrated against women and girls in the workplace.
During this event, young people wrote and performed a play about the challenges and discrimination people with disabilities experience, as well as participating in a quiz about GBV, which helped others understand the various threats of violence women and girls may face. The aim was to empower communities to take action and become an ally for people from diverse groups.
The event also showcased some of the amazing work done by refugees who are participating in vocational training programs, which your kind gifts help make possible. This includes training courses on food preparation and production, hairdressing, mobile phone repairs, tailoring and dress making.
This event was important in bringing people together to create awareness and to celebrate the new community they are part of as refugees in Ethiopia, and it was a privilege to be there, celebrating with the men, women and children who have found community here. One of my favourite moments was near the end of the day, when people broke out into dance. Each country has its own style of dancing and dress, and I watched the various groups learn each other’s dances while smiling and laughing. It was wonderful to see how resilient the people are – young and old, men and women.
Thank you for your gifts that have brought a brighter future and new friendships to people who have fled their homelands.
Act for Peace
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Your gift is making a difference:
$83 can provide a man or woman with the practical trade skills and experience they need to secure paid employment or even start their own business so that they can support themselves and their families.
Ethiopia currently hosts over 900,000 refugees, primarily from neighbouring South Sudan, Somalia, Sudan and Eritrea, as well as smaller numbers of refugees from the Congo, Yemen and Syria. Large numbers of refugees continue to arrive daily and resources in the refugee camps are severely overstretched.
Through our partner in Ethiopia, the Ethiopian Orthodox Church Development and Inter-Church Aid Commission (EOC-DICAC) , your gifts are helping to give refugees skills and training to have an independent future by earning an income. Vocational training courses are tailoring and dressmaking, mobile phone repairs, hairdressing, and food preparation and production. This training also helps build confidence and self-worth, and friendships with other trainees.
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