Celebrating Water – Together!
Four members of the Sacramento Rotary Club, Clayton Lee, Marta Senz, Rita Gibson and Laurie Rood traveled to Ethiopia with Seifu Ibssa of EAVO in March 2018 to celebrate the completion of the Ajo Water Project together with the community of three villages in Acheber, Ethiopia. Upon arrival to the villages, we were informed that the entire community participated by donating their labor and local materials for the project, which will serve over 5,000 people. The youth in particular came out in force and worked very hard carrying sand, cement, rocks and hiking all the way to where the water tank was constructed. Three elders took turns in blessing the Rotarians, and gave them hand-crafted shawls to show their appreciation. East African Village Outreach (EAVO) would like to extend its heartfelt thank you to Mr. Clayton Lee and Mr. John Phair for their enormous contribution of energy and finance. We also want to thank Mr. Hailu Ibssa & Mr. Jim Reese for their vision.
New Building – New Life!
With your help, we were able to open our 8th school in East Africa! Our Kenyan partners, Samuel and Susan Okumu reported that the new building has, in their words, “brought a new life to the community and greatly changed the image of the Church”. A BIG Thank You goes to EAVO family of donors.
A Heartfelt Acknowledgment
We partially financed Girum Fantaye’s college education. Upon his graduation, Mr. Fantaye wrote: “This acknowledgment was written on my original paper submitted to Mekane Yesus Seminary. Board members of East African Village Outreach have been loyal supporters of my education, and encouraged me to pursue my dream of serving the Church. Thank you so much!”.
Among the 32 college students we currently are supporting, all of whom are from Acheber village, five have graduated this year. It is encouraging to see more girls graduate this year, though we have a lot of work ahead of us.
- Sitota Byene (M), Civil Engineering
- Bontu Bedada (F), Statistics
- Bahirnesh Mulatu (F), Civics & Ethical Education
- Biruk Bobe (F), Geography & Environmental Studies
- Negalign Zewde (M), Accounting & Finance
Upon encouragements from EAVO, an Alumni of Acheber Village Graduates has been formed and is making progress in setting up a nonprofit organization to improve the future of Acheber village. They have begun meeting periodically.
An Evening of Celebration
On April 7, 2018, EAVO and over 120 friends celebrated a year of accomplishments and shared hopes for the future at a dinner at Fremont Presbyterian Church in Sacramento. A team of talented cooks led by Betty Girma provided a bountiful Ethiopian meal for all.
The evening included reports from the EAVO Board: Chariman Dr. Olanna Aberra served as Master of Ceremonies; Jim Reese shared EAVO beginnings; Treasurer Skip Ohs provided an overview of fiscal health; Secretary Adele Ohs shared the work to improve education for female students in the villages and introduced Carole Hanna, local chair of Days For Girls which makes and provides reusable feminine hygiene kits. Executive Director Seifu Ibssa shared progress on current initiatives (water projects and schools) with a special word from Rotarian Clayton Lee about the recent visit Rotary members made to Acheber.
Special guest speaker, Professor. Adugnaw Worku, retired professor of Pacific Union College and director of ZOZ Amba Foundation, spoke poignantly of his childhood in rural Ethiopia and of the opportunities God opened to him through higher education. He emphasized the value of investing in education as a vehicle for supporting young Ethiopians.
The evening concluded with an appeal, which was warmly received. Thanks to all who helped and who have joined us in supporting transform lives in Ethiopia.
No Girls Left Behind
As we reported in our last newsletter, the ratio of girls who graduate from high school is extremely low in sub-Saharan Africa. In our high school program, only 13% graduate from college. One of the ways in which EAVO has been addressing this issue is through distribution of feminine hygiene supplies to all high school girls.
We are happy to report that we have partnered with Days for Girls, a nonprofit organization that provides feminine hygiene supplies throughout the World. During our recent trip with the Sacramento Rotarians, we distributed 178 washable supplies to every high school girl in Acheber. A presentation was made on best use of the feminine hygiene supplies.
Let there be light
As part of the effort to increase the girls ratio, we also provided 96 solar lights to help the girls study after they help with house chores. In prior years, we distributed 66 of those study lights and were informed they were extremely helpful.
Each light costs less than $10 discounted and are worth every cent. Thank you for making this possible!
Next Year’s Budgets:
In its May 5, 2018 meeting, EAVO Board approved $34,060.36 of expenditures for the upcoming fiscal year that begins in September 2018 and ends August 2019. 93% of the incoming donations will be sent to Ethiopia and Kenya for various projects and teachers’ salaries where as 7% is allocated to administrative expenses such as wiring fees, newsletter printing, etc.
As you can see, 93% of your gift goes directly to the recipients. We hope you will recognize this effort to reduce our overhead expenses and join us to make a difference in bringing badly needed education and the Gospel of Jesus Christ to the next generation of East Africans.
We have moved!
Please note that our new address:
East African Village Outreach
9688 Ashstone Way
Elk Grove, CA 95624
You can donate online at:
email us your comments and suggestions
- Olana Aberra, Chairman
- Adele Ohs, Secretary
- Skip Ohs, Treasurer
- Mary Staples, Member
- Jim Reese, Member
- Jaime Major, Member
- Aberra Damessa, Member
- Seifu Ibssa, Member & Executive Director