• Access to Education - 6 new schools

    Villagers know how to get a school built - Volunteer!

    Villagers are asking for schools and word has spread that if the village provides the labor and material (Eucalyptus trees and mud), Project Ethiopia will give the roof, floor, desks and blackboards.

    This is perfect for Project Ethiopia because the pride of ownership guarantees that maintenance and care for the school is willingly done by the villagers.

    More good news for education: Like planting a seed, when Project Ethiopia builds a school building, the government supplies certified teachers and student textbooks. So, building the school causes everything to "bloom."

    Tara and Girarghe Primary schools were very primitive basic education schools that taught only reading and writing. The teachers were volunteer parents who could read and write. When Project Ethiopia built the new schools, they became official schools with certified teachers and a curriculum.

    West Berayta was an official school already for grades 1-4, but the building was unsafe and dangerous. After Project Ethiopia built 3 new buildings, the school expanded and now teaches grades 1-8. [image]

    Helping Girls Stay in School

    Nothing is as big a barrier to girls who reach puberty as the lack of school latrines and menstrual supplies. Ethiopian girls miss 3-5 days of school per month, or 50 days per year, causing them to drop out of high school because they lack adequate supplies related to menstruation.

    The goal of Project Ethiopia is for each girl to learn sewing skills to make 6 washable pads, a holder with elastic waistband, a carrying case for spare or used pad. Project Ethiopia hoped that for this challenging first training, 3 teachers and 6 girls would sign up. More girls attended than expected! They had instructions in Amharic (the language the girls speak at home) from, an organization that has taught this training workshop in other parts of Ethiopia and helped up with our plans. [images]

    Project Ethiopia bought the materials and the girls learned the skills required.

  • At present, only 8% of rural Ethiopians use any form of latrine

    Latrines add 20 years to life expectancy ~ Rose George

    West Berayta Elementary School's latrine will be the new standard for Project Ethiopia.

    This latrine is a urine-diverting, composting and above ground latrine. Note the blue-barrel washing stations outside the latrine so the children can wash their hands afterwards. The latrine has one composting pit and screen vent per drop hole, eliminating flies and odor.

    Click here to see how this works.

    Farmers are eager to use the school latrine's urine as fertilizer because of the cost savings over chemical urea fertilizer and the farmers get about an 8% greater yield. Another benefit is the savings from not having to buy the chemical fertilizer and the urine is sterile, so can be safely used.

    The Ethiopian workers employed by Project Ethiopia have gained skills that allow them to more efficiently make the cement blocks and molds of the pit covers for the latrines. These molds are used for both the school latrines and the family latrines that are becoming popular in villages. The purple cloth surrounding the latrine acts as advertising of good hygiene as everyone can see from a distance that families have latrines.

    Why promoting hygiene matters:

    Diarrhea kills 230,000 children under the age of 5 in Ethiopia each year. Diarrhea does more than bring disease and early death: It brings loss of nutrition, malnutrition and stunting of children's physical and intellectual growth. The simple act of washing hands with soap and water can reduce diarrhoea disease by one third.

    Project Ethiopia workers have gained skills so the family latrine pit covers became more stream-lined. The purple cloth has become an advertisement for good hygiene as everyone can see from a distance that families have latrines.

    The sub-species of flies that are eye-specific and spread trachoma (causing blindness) from the pus and crust in one eye to the next eye cannot breed in latrines, only in open faeces.

    "The toilet and the latrine are among the most under-used tools to combat poverty and disease in the developing world." according to a United Nations report.

    Sanitation Facts Secret for success?

    After every use, 2 handfuls of compost are added to the pit. Each stall will have wiping material and organic compost material. After 1 year of use, the toilet stall and floors are moved to the other section of the latrine and the filled pits are covered and left to compost for a year. When the toilets need to be moved back the next year, the compost is germ-free and ready for agricultural use. Urinals drain to a tank for use as fertilizer and is germ-free in 3 months. Smell? The pit has a tight lid (which is easily moved aside for use and replaced afterwards by one's foot), so smells are minimized. Flies can't get out through the pit opening and are then trapped by the air flow vent which is screened.

    With the encouragement and example of Project Ethiopia member, Workineh, the urine and compost is now used by the local farmers to boost crop growth.

    Ask anyone what it will take to make women's equality a reality and "toilets" will probably not be the response

    Yet, it is difficult to exaggerate the impact that access to private, safe and sanitary toilets would have on the daily lives and long-term prospects of the 1.3 billion women and girls world-wide that are currently doing without. The burdens of water-hauling are widely understood: This tedious, time-consuming and physically debilitating task reduces the time available for productive activities and, for girls, to attend school. Less discussed are the blows to health, productivity and dignity that result from poor sanitation.

    In some settings where basic sanitation is lacking, women and girls have to rise before dawn, making their way in the darkness to fields to defecate in the open, know they risk rape or other violence in the process. In some circumstances, women and girls often go the whole day without relieving themselves until night affords them the privacy of darkness. Sometimes, they limit their daytime intake of food and water so they can make it until evening. Restricted toilet opportunities can cause discomfort and increase the likelihood of health problems such as urinary tract infections and chronic constipation as well as causing unnecessary mental stress.

    How can the future be better if today's girls must drop out of school for want of something as basic as a toilet?
    Advancing gender equality with toilets and taps
    Safe water = ability to wash face and hands = significant reduction to trachoma
    Reasonable access to safe water means girls can go to school instead of using time and energy to get water for the family
    Substantial economic gains occur with increased access to water, according to the World Health Organization
  • Daily water requirement: 12.5 gallons per person per day

    Average Ethiopian use: 2.5 gallons  –  Average American use: 176 gallons

    The recommended basic water requirement for drinking, bathing, food preparation and sanitation needs is 12.5 gallons per person per day.

    In 2013, the town of Dangla offered a water with distribution centers if Project Ethiopia gave the pipe and accessories. Yes! 186 villagers came out and spent 24,000 hours of hard labor and dug 2 2-mile long ditches and installed the water pipes.

    Only 31% of rural Ethiopia has safe water

    Project Ethiopia works with local villagers to provide school and village wells. Of the Project Ethiopia wells installed, all of them continue to be operational because the villagers have the experience and know-how to maintain them.

    Before the wells were dug, children got their water from these streams.

    15 wells have been installed with 7 of them at schools, 8 in villages and 3 Piped-water systems have been installed at 3 more schools

    7 School Wells:
    Walaji Elementary School - 1,500 students
    Bacha Elementary School - 1,233 students
    West Berayta Elementary School - 452 students
    Girarghe Primary School - 220 students
    Ziguda Elementary School - 1, 020 students
    Tara Gabriel School

    3 Piped-Water Systems:
    Dangla 03 Riverside Elementary School - 1,963 students
    Abiot Godana Elementary School 1,485 students
    Mengeshu Jemberee 9th & 10th Grades - 6,000 students

    8 Village Wells:
    East Berayta West Dubta
    East Dubta
    Bacha Neighborhood
    North Girarghe
    Central Berayta
    Aire Marefia

    Repairs and maintenance of wells are done by the village workers. Digging the wells and installing the pumps has given Project Ethiopia workers the expertise to maintain and repair wells. 3 of the wells developed problems that were quickly remedied because workers have this expertise.

    Water quality is monitored by the government, who test regularly for purity and add chlorine when necessary.

    Waterbourne diseases cause 80% of illnesses and death in the developing world

  • A dry home is the most significant improvement for a family

    Project Ethiopia has always strongly maintained that they do not give money to people. Project Ethiopia gives the funding to supply what is needed.

    To have a dry home is the most significant improvement for a village family and the easiest for Project Ethiopia to accomplish since it requires no labor costs and only the costs for supplies.

    The community leaders, along with Project Ethiopia members, Workineh and Awoke, determine who is most in need, i.e.: widows, the sick, elderly, and orphans. The poorest families need new roofs = new house. The grass used for a roof of a traditional house is not sustainable because grasslands have been reduced by population growth and farm expansion. Maintianing a grass roof is not possible.

    Much to the joy of the village, this woman's house was replaced and all that's needed is the mud and straw finishing on the outside. With her house upgraded, her name can now be entered in the floor draw.

    So far, 87 families have received corrugated metal roofing sections and have built their houses with the help of family and friends. If a family has no support, they receive 40 roof section instead of 50 and the cost of the 10 sections is given to them in the form of nails and a carpenter's help.

    Once a house has been built, paint is given and the results are fantastic

    100% Completion of 5 villages

    Although Project Ethiopia is helping villagers in 14 villages make positive changes in their living conditions, our focus now is 100% of homes in 5 villages to have non-leaking roofs, concrete floors, wells and family latrines.

    These 5 villages are within a geographical area separated by roads, rivers and mountains from other villages, but are easily reached by our workers and their donkey carts carrying construction supplies. There are over 250 families in this area.

    The process for deciding who gets a cement floor is simple - by drawing from a hat!

      The benefit of concrete floors:
    • less cases of diarrhea
    • less instances of respiratory illnesses
    • increased productivity in children's school progress
    • increased level of confidence and inspire families to smooth their mud-wall interiors, make furniture and decorate their walls

    In 2008, Ethiopian television and radio came to interview some of the villagers as up until then, it was unheard of for a farm house to have a concrete floor.

  • Ethiopia is 85% rural

    Healthy Storage Solution for Corn and Grain

    Children become sick because of malathion pesticides. NO MORE! Project Ethiopia now offers farmers one ton seed & grain bags to store crops without pesticide and with no chance for weevils or rats to destroy the crop. Project Ethiopia will share the cost of the bag with farmers - $55 from a farmer’s savings from honey sales & use of diluted urine as fertilizer.

    ‘BEE FARMING’ SPREADS and helps the farm economy:

    Every beehive can produce $175 in honey sales. The honey in the Dangla area is in high demand and Project Ethiopia gave 101 beehives (to 50 Farmers’ Association members) and many other farmers purchased beehives. All farmers in the Dangla area are welcome to use the 2 centrifuges, 2 honey comb makers and embedders.

    IMPORTANCE: Seed loans can be paid back with money from honey sales so that crops do not need to be sold immediately and can be sold later when prices are higher.

    Diluted Urine as fertilizer

    Urine works better than chemical urea fertilizer and farmers get about an 8% greater yield with urine as fertilizer. The main benefit is the savings from not having to buy chemical urea fertilizer.

    Twenty farmers volunteered to grow an area of corn fertilized once a week with 40 ml of 3:1 WATER:URINE mix only. The rest of their corn field was fertilized using chemical urea fertilizer. The 20 farmers were paid $20 each (the value of harvest of the urine-fertilized plot) as a risk payment since the result was unknown and in case all of their urine-fertilized corn failed.

    There were 100 corn plants randomly selected from each field. The weight of all kernels from the corn in the chemical urea field was subtracted from the weight of all kernels from the corn in the urine field. The data are these 20 differences. For all 20 farmers, the increase in weight for the urine-fertilized corn was statistically significant and the urine collected from the latrines is sterile and can be safely used immediately.

    This farmer grew 2 experimental plots of corn. One was fertilized with 1:1 water:urine, one with 3:1 water:urine and the rest of his field with the expensive urea chemical fertilizer that all the farmers use. His results were that the 1:1 urine-fertilized corn had more cobs per plant, a larger diameter stalk and better root system than did the other plants. The yield was greatest from the 1:1 urine-fertilized plants, next from the 3:1 urine fertilized plants and least from the chemical urea-fertilized plants. His results gave all the farmers increased confidence using diluted urine as a fertilizer.

    ALL farmers can now save the money they used to spend on the chemical urea fertilizer, using this money for additional food for the family and other necessities.


    Workineh wrote the bylaws for Farmers’ Associations which can exist all over Ethiopia. The Farmers’ Association exists to help farmers understand new principles of farming: use of compost to enrich the soil, use of diluted urine as fertilizer, how to work with beehives and harvest honey, how to time sales of crops.

    Workineh organized the first Farmers’ Association – 50 farmers in the Dangla area.

    The second Farmers’ Association is formed in the Girarghe villages. The 50 members had to be recommended by members of the first Farmers’ Association and they were eager to join.

    Workineh will teach farmers to use urine and compost from school latrines to fertilize and increase crops, decrease malnutrition and lower costs by $125 per farmer per year by not buying chemical fertilzers.


    102 Modern beehives - $42 each
    2 Honey extractor centrifuge - $211 each
    2 Casting molds for honey combs - $423 each
    320 Sickles for women or children who weed and harvest - $2 each
    100 Watering cans - $3 each
    Will you help us help rural farmers in Ethiopia?