Programs & Projects
Under this program activity there are two components: School construction and Promoting Alternative Basic Education Programs
i) Basic Primary school construction and upgrading
To help School age children who have no access to Educational facilities, EMRDA constructs standard primary school and handed it over to the local community and the local education offices. Since its establishment it has constructed and furnished the Daleti Primary School- in West Showa zone of Oromia Region upgraded the Nesir Primary School in to junior and secondary school level - Near ALERT hospital in region 14.
The upgraded Nesir junior secondary school
As a result of the intervention:
- Over 3000 school age children have got basic educational opportunity
- The quality of the teaching- learning improved
- Community school management practice introduced
ii) Non Formal or Alternative Basic Education
The overall goal of this program is to alleviate the problem of rural children who have no access to basic education and thereby contribute to the improvement of school enrollment through establishing cost effective, flexible, and easily accessible and community based basic education centers. The teaching learning activity will be conducted under a shading/ locally made centers/ assisted by trained facilitators drawn from secondary school completed and drop outs at higher level of education, identified by the local community. Some of the general guiding principles of the program include:
Adaptability and relevance
Local resource focus earner centered approach
Linkage and integration with formal schools
Program integration with development work
Integrated and condensed curriculum
The Alternative Basic Education Centers are shelters made of locally available materials. The facilitators are drawn from the community by the community themselves. The community is entitled to run the overall program activity backed by technical support and coordination of EMRDA Children attending Alternative basic education in pastoral areas. Since endorsement of its five years strategic plan (1998- 2002), EMRDA has been implementing Alternative Basic Education Program at 18 Alternative Basic Education centers enrolling more than 3500 children, who are denied of access to basic educational opportunity. Some of the achievements obtained under this program includes:
Communities awareness about the importance of education and experience of owning and running projects enhanced 36 potentially active but unemployed youths have got job opportunity and have acquired the skills and knowledge of Participatory teaching learning methodology.
Girls participation in education increased Innovative aspect of EMRDA's experience in this area is it’s the practice of " enabling parents to write and read through their children attending the Alternative Basic education Programs , being in their own homes " and "conducting detailed socio- economic survey (with out incurring any additional cost) through the assigned facilitators willing effort.
Under the health sector program activity there are three components:-
i) Reproductive Health
ii) HIV/AIDS prevention and control
iii) Rural Child Nutrition
i) Reproductive Health and HIV/AIDS
Cognizant of the problem context, EMRDA has been implementing Reproductive Health project t, initiated based on community needs assessment survey. In view of this, it has been running Adolescence Reproductive Health project at two woredas of North Wollo zone namely: Habru and Gubalafto targeting over 8000 vulnerable Adolescents and young adults. Many target groups in the project area have been suffered from RH related problems such as early marriage, unwanted pregnancy, abortion, HTP, girl's genital mutilation, rape, abduction. Information and counseling on sexuality are non-existence for the majority of adolescents due to cultural barrier and lack of habits of free communication about RH/FP among the community.
The overall objective of the project is, there fore, improving reproductive health and sexuality life of Adolescence and young adults in the project area.
- To reduce the practice of Harmful traditional practice like early marriage, female Genital mutilation and other Reproductive health related problems in the target area through integrated and massive intervention
- To disseminate IEC on HIV/AIDS and related problems
- To promote Family Planning information and Education and create access to FPservice
The project therefore, results in the change reproductive health knowledge, attitude, and behavior of adolescent youth in target areas for a better and healthy sexual life that prevents them from involuntary sexual encounters, early and unwanted pregnancies, STD, HIV/AIDS and other reproductive health related problems.
Apart from Adolescence reproductive health project in North Wollo zone of the Amhara Region EMRDA has provided in Afar region, Amibara Woreda to strengthen school clubs, which are available but not active due to financial, technical and material constraints. The main objective of the project was to strengthen the clubs through provision of materials, technical and financial support. As per the project action plan it has offered training for the club leadership committee, produced localized brochures, leaflets and posters and establishes income generating scheme that will ensure continues income source for sustainable activities of the clubs. As a pilot project in 2001/2002 academic year, EMRDA has also been running girls counseling and mentoring activity aimed to improve academic performance of girls through sexuality education and other related causes.
Similarly it is under process to launch youth reproductive health iniative project through establishing village level clubs that will promote reproductive health education among the youth and adolescent groups
ii) HIV/AIDS prevention and Control
The devastating effect of HIV/has these days been the concern of the Government, NGOs, POs and the community at large. In the light of this, in response to the national call, EMRDA has recently joined the collective effort exerting to curb the spread of the disease. Since September 2002 it has been implementing HIV/ AIDS prevention and control project at six kebeles of Lode Hetosa woreda, in Arsi Zone of Oromia Region. The project is financed by Action Aid Ethiopia, and has a two years period.
The main objective of the project is generally to curb the spread of the disease among the different age groups in the project area through hosting Behavioral Change Intervention strategies. A coordinating office and six youth centers have been established to facilitate the promotion of the BCC. So far Commendable progress has been achieved on the project.
EMRDA has also submitted a proposal to the National HIV/AIDS Secretariat office to carry out integrated HIV/AIDS and prevention control projects at some districts of Amhara, Oromia and Afar region through massive and integrated intervention strategies
iii) Rural Child Nutrition
EMRDA has also carried out rural child Nutrition program through educating and demonstrating preparation of highly nutrient foods from locally available resource to mothers in some rural areas of Arsi zone. The ultimate objective of the project is to minimize the acute malnutrition problem prevalent in the project area and generally to help parent particularly mothers to have a solidified knowledge and awareness on child feeding as well as to adapt sanitary practices. It was also aimed to help farmer households to diversify their farming practices by planting vegetables and fruits along with cereals.
Malnourished children during growth monitoring check up
Accordingly commendable change has been obtained among the local children whose mothers took the Education given through demonstration and practice. According to the findings of the Assessment Conducted in some of the target areas a practice of growing vegetables has started.
As Children are the priority focus of the organization EMRDA has intended to carry out similar program in other areas where it is currently operational. In the pastural areas of Afar, other best experiences will be adapted to improve the health status of malnourished children
The Training sector Program activity has three components
i) Community Skills Training
Under this component specially poor and destitute women who are potentially capable but lack the skills and financial capacity to generate their own business will be drawn and equipped with marketable skills training on different skills being in their nearby villages. After they complete the required training and equipped with the desired skills they will be availed with the machinery and seed capital, sufficient to generate their own income to help themselves and their families. Usually they run their business in cooperative in and around their localities.
So far, EMRDA has provided Skills training opportunity particularly on Sewing, Embroidery, waving and computer skills for 36 women in Iteya and Assebe Teferi Districts of Oromia Region, availing the necessary machine and seed capital.
ii ) Youth Vocational Training (General)
The vocational training component is designed to equip secondary school completed youths and drop outs at secondary school level who are drawn from poor family background with marketable vocational skills, so that they will help themselves and their families either by generating their own small business or being employed in large factories. The training under this component will be carried out by a recognized training Center located in the nearby area where the target beneficiaries are living. EMRDA will fully cover the tuition fee, transport and refreshment as well as all training material cost of the trainees. After graduation the youths will be provided with the necessary hand tools and seed capital to help them start their own micro business.
So far 15 destitute secondary school Youths have been trained on Carpentry, Plumbing, Building construction electricity and house warring and took the necessary hand tool and seed capital.. Similarly since September 2002, 25 secondary school completed youths are attending the training to get the same opportunity.
In this regard, cognizant of the increasing youth unemployment rate of the country, the organization is in process of legalization to establish its own Vocational Training center and to assist more destitute youths who have lost vocational training opportunities, at efficient and effective manner. A Saudi based development partner, called Islamic Development Bank has already approved an amount of USD 200,000 for construction and furnishing activities of the project. The running cost of the training will be expected from potential donors and philanthropies found in country and abroad who are willing to complement EMRDA's development effort in different sectors.
Under this program EMRDA provides awareness creation workshops on community development mainly in rural areas of the country. So far it has conducted such awareness creation programs near Shashemene, in Arsi and Afar Regions targeting influential community members. Violence against women, Reproductive Health, HIV/AIDS and the importance of basic education are some of the main thematic issues discussed in the community development awareness creation program.
To ensure food security at household level EMRDA has been carrying out grain banking project that helps Farmers Cooperatives to be engaged in grain marketing activities. The project is designed in such a way that through hosting better local marketing system ,during harvesting and ploughing season, mainly by purchasing at a little better than the local market during harvesting and providing seed grain on credit during farming season both the cooperative capacity and livelihood of the household will be improved. Some of the main preconditions tunder this project are .Grain store construction, Training to the leaders of the cooperative on mainly on basic marketing and cooperative leadership skills, as well as providing seed capital/as a loan/ to help them start the marketing activity. So far EMRDA has provided this opportunity for a farmers cooperative of 600 members in Arsi Zone of Oromia Region.
Democracy and Human Rights
Under this program EMRDA has offered a training workshop on harmful traditional practice, conflict resolution, leadership and civic education to community members drawn from traditional institutions, clan leaders, elders and other influential members of grassroots at six woredas of zone 3 of Afar Region. 280 participants, 40% women have attended the training workshop offered at the woreda capitals. The training has been offered with the financial support of the US embassy in Ethiopia, for five days in each Woreda.
Similarly, financed by the UNDP Democracy and Human Rights Commission in Ethiopia, training Workshop has also been given for 100 individuals (50% women) in Hetosa woreda of Arsi zone. The focus of the workshop was mainly on three thematic issues: Democracy, Human Rights and Women; Women and Harmful Traditional practice, Women and the Ethiopian Constitution. The participants of the workshop, as before, were drawn from traditional institutions, religious and community leaders, women institutions and other relevant community groups.
Under this program there are two components: subsisting orphanage children who are attending EMRDA's Alternative Education Program with clothing, educational materials and other related assistances as well as subsisting high achiever university students from poor family background through providing a monthly expense of up to birr 100 per head.
During emergency Situation EMRDA has a program to provide supplementary food distribution to drought affected areas where it runs community development projects. In the year 2001 for instance it has distributed supplementary food to 500 destitute mothers and children in Gode zone of the Somalia national regional state. It has distributed a relief food aid for 5000 people in Fursi and Samu Robi districts of the Afar Regional State
To address the current drought which dangers the life of over 15 million people the organization has been appealing international donors in country and abroad through using various communication channels. The current drought has in depth affected the development project activities the organization has been running in some areas of Afar and Oromia Regions.