Putting Education Within Reach for Ethiopian Children

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Posted on 06/24/2013

Many Ethiopian kids, including 15-year-old Frehiwot, grow up with the dream of receiving an education and one day attending a university. Frehiwot, who receives school supplies through ChildFund, says she hopes to follow in the footsteps of Kitaw Ejigu, an Ethiopian-American astronomer who worked for NASA.

"He worked hard in school, went abroad through a state scholarship to pursue higher education, completed his degree and became a great person in the world," Frehiwot says. "I will study hard, and when I get scholarship to enter university, I will study and become famous, too."

Unfortunately for many Ethiopian children , an education is out of reach. But with your help, they can attend school and achieve their goals.

A Lack of Opportunities: Education and Ethiopia’s Economy

Today, many Ethiopian children do not have access to the educational opportunities they need to succeed. The population of Ethiopia is one of the poorest in the world, and countless Ethiopian children succumb to diseases associated with a low standard of living, while others are forced to stay home to help their families survive.

This begins as young as kindergarten, as only 5 percent of Ethiopian children enrolled in pre-primary school in 2011, according to UNESCO. At the primary school level, about 85 percent of boys and 80 percent of girls are enrolled in school, but only 64 to 65 percent of these children actually attend, UNICEF states.

The lack of educational opportunities lead to problems later in life; only 39 percent of adults and 55 percent of youths are literate, UNESCO reports.

Providing Access to Education to Ethiopian Children

One of ChildFund's primary goals is to give more Ethiopian children like Frehiwot the educational opportunities they need to live out their dreams. Since we began working in Ethiopia, more than 39,000 children have had the opportunity to learn in the 23 early childhood development centers, 31 preschools and kindergartens, 37 primary schools, two high schools, 26 libraries and 61 additional classrooms ChildFund has helped build. In fact, each year ChildFund Ethiopia gives more than 14,000 local children access to early childhood care and support, working with their parents and caregivers to show them the best ways to teach their children and foster healthy mental, physical and social development.

In 2012, ChildFund upgraded infrastructure and renovated 18 schools in Ethiopia, as well as providing educational materials for more than 21,000 students and teachers.


To help us continue to give children like Frehiwot the chance to learn, please consider sponsoring a child in Ethiopia. For $28 per month, you can help ChildFund ensure that a child in Africa has access to the education, food, water and health care he or she needs to grow up happily and healthily.