“We envision a future in which every person in Ethiopia has access to clean water, sanitary facilities and education.”
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THE SITUATION IN ETHIOPIA
The current Situation in Ethiopia is everything but easy. It is not without reason that Ethiopia ranks among the world’s poorest countries. Wherever you look, you are faced with problems which seem hardly solvable at first sight.
Over the last 30 years, the population has increased from 30 million to nearly 100 million inhabitants. The effects are clearly visible. About 30 years ago, 40% of Ethiopia’s landscape was covered with woods. This number has shrunk to only about 12% nowadays. Additionally, in many cases the waste disposal is done by the rain: Within a few minutes rapid rivers can develop which carry everything away, including the garbage lying on the ground.
A functioning sewing and canal system, nationwide electricity supply, access to education and medical treatment are beyond imagination for most Ethiopians. Through the daily process of obtaining water, most people have to walk for hours, often wearing no shoes at all. As a result, domestic men and women are used to showering only a few times a year (on average about every two months) and seldom having the opportunity to wash their hands, which are the only tools they use when eating.
Another problem is that school kids often do not go to school, because they need to help their families by getting water from the rivers. Especially girls have to suffer from the lack of a proper sanitary infrastructure. It is estimated that over 30% of all the girls on the countryside in Ethiopia drop out of school as soon as they get their period, since there is no sanitary infrastructure available.
As we faced all those problems and inequalities, we realized soon that there is something very basic in their needs that can already increase their quality of life by a lot. It is clear that many of their major issues can easily be solved through a better access to clean water and sanitation. All that needs to be done is to gather the rain water in cisterns in order to make it accessible to the population. This way, they do not have to face long walks to the river, can wash more often and are less likely to become sick caused by dead animals and bacteria in the river.
A SHORT INTRODUCTION