New care centre in very poor community
A new day care centre has been established in Dembi Dollo in Ethiopia this month, after Stand by Me identified 45 children living in extreme conditions, some with siblings and others who have been abandoned on the streets and now being looked after by neighbours or relatives.
Six committed Christians have been running a small programme in the impoverished town of Dembi Dollo for some time, but there is not enough money to support all of the children’s needs. Stand by Me has adopted this programme and made plans for expansion as we saw the desperate need for a Day Care Centre for some of the world’s most vulnerable children, overwhelmed by extreme poverty.
In this area the biggest need is not a children’s home, but for clothes, resources and support for the families, so it is our aim to help these children, alongside the single mums and widows caring for their own and other people’s children.
Dembi Dollo is a 14 hour drive from the Addis Ababa, the capital of Ethiopia. It has a population of 100,000 people and is just 70 miles from the Sudanese border in Western Ethiopia. There are no roads in Dembi Dollo, just tracks, and it receives no government support.
The water supply is totally inadequate, in some cases people rely on polluted streams, the electricity supply is very intermittent, and unlike Bekoiji where our school and Children’s Village is based, Dembi Dollo doesn’t even have the provision of horse and carts. The people who do survive do so by subsistence farming which is an extremely difficult and impoverished way of life. Most homes are built of branches and leaves and the roofs are made of straw.
Stand by Me is now renting the biggest house of six rooms, in order to feed 45 children, give them spiritual guidance and educational help for an hour each evening. We have employed three teachers for the subjects of Oromo (local language), English and Maths and also a manager to oversee the care and education of the children. The children will also receive regular medical checks.
We are excited about what the future holds for our work in Ethiopia and we hope you will join us in this new journey. If you would like to be one of the first people to support our new Dembi Dollo Day Care Centre please contact Katie on 0845 604 5543 or email Katie@standby.me today.