Initiative Africa and Tigray Authorities Partner to Launch Accelerated Education for War-Affected Students: Signing Ceremony Marks Milestone in Educational Initiative

Mekele, May 12, 2016 – In a significant move to address the educational disruption caused by the conflict in the Tigray region, Initiative Africa has signed a three-year project agreement aimed at providing accelerated education to students who have fallen behind, particularly girls. The signing ceremony took place on May 12, 2016, in Mekele.

The project, funded by the Malala Fund, focuses on implementing community-wide accelerated education and teacher training programs, targeting 1,000 students aged 9 to 15. These students, affected by the war, will not only receive education but also life and skills training, crucial for their personal and professional development. The initiative spans six districts in the central and northwestern Tigray zones, reflecting a broad geographical reach.

Representatives from the Regional Education Office and the Planning Finance and Aid Coordination Office attended the ceremony, where they expressed their strong support for the project. They recognized Initiative Africa’s efforts to provide much-needed educational opportunities to young women and boys in the region.

The project agreement marks a collaborative effort between Initiative Africa, the Malala Fund, and regional authorities, emphasizing a unified approach to tackling educational setbacks caused by the conflict. Through this partnership, the project aims to create a sustainable impact, empowering war-affected youth with the tools they need to rebuild their lives and contribute positively to their communities.

As the project unfolds, it promises to bring hope and educational opportunities to those who need them most, fostering resilience and future prosperity in the Tigray region.

በመቀሌ የፕሮጀክት ስምምነት ፊርማ ተካሄደ

በሲቪል ማህበረሰብ ድርጅቶች ባለስልጣን የተመዘገበው ኢንሼቲቭ አፍሪካ ከማላላ ፈንድ በተገኘው የገንዘብ ድጋፍ በትግራይ ክልል በጦርነቱ ምክንያት  በትምህርት ወደ ኋላ የቀሩ ተማሪዎች በተለይም ልጃገረዶችን የተፋጠነ ትምህርት እንዲያገኙ የማስቻል የ3 ዓመት የፕሮጀክት ስምምነት ፊርማ ስነስርአት ግንቦት 12 ቀን 2016 ዓ.ም በመቀሌ ከተማ ተካሄደ።

ከፕሮጀክቱ ዋነኛ ተግባራት መካከል እድሚያቸው ከ9 እስከ 15  አመት ለሚሆኑ 1000 ተማሪዎች በማህበረሰብ አቀፍ የተፋጠነ የትምህርትና የመምህራን ስልጠና መርሀ-ግብሮች መተግበር እንዲሁም የህይወትና ክህሎት  ስልጠና እንዲያገኙ ማስቻል ሲሆን ፕሮጀክቱ የሚተገበረው በማዐከላዊና በሰሜን ምዕራብ ትግራይ ዞኖች ባሉ 6 ወረዳዎች ነው።

የፕረጀክት ስምምነት ፊርማው የተካሄደው ኢኒሺዬቲቭ አፍሪካ ከክልሉ ትምህርት ቢሮ እና  እቅድ ፋይናንስና እርዳታ ማስተባበሪያ  ቢሮ ጋር ነው።

በፊርማ ስነ-ስርአቱ ላይ የተገኙት ሁለቱም የሴክትር መስሪያ ቤቶች ተወካዮች ኢንሼቲቭ አፍሪካ በክልሉ በጦርነት የተጎዱ ወጣት ሴቶችና ወንድ ልጆች በተፋጠነ ትምህርት ተጠቃሚ የሚያደርግ ፕሮጀክት ለመተግበር በመንቀሳቀስ ላይ መሆኑ የሚያስመሰግነው ነው ካሉ በኋላ ፕሮጀክቱ ስኬታማ እንዲሆን አስፈላጊውን ትብብር ሁሉ እንደሚያደርጉ ቃል ገብተዋል።   

Empowering Female Potters: A Revival through Skill Development in Tigray

In an ambitious effort to empower women and rejuvenate a heritage craft, Initiative Africa, in collaboration with the Tigray and Axum Tourism Offices, has launched a pivotal skill development training program for female potters in the Tigray region. This initiative is a significant part of Initiative Africa’s “Business for Peace” project, which seeks to mitigate the impact of recent conflicts on local industries. Trainees, including Haimanot Abrha from Hauzen and Atsede G/Yohannes from Adwa, have applauded the program for enhancing their pottery skills and fostering a vibrant exchange of cultural and artistic experiences across the region.

The training has emerged as a beacon of hope for participants like Trhas G/Egziabher from Yeha, who, along with her fellow artisans, aspires to resume work and overcome the severe challenges posed by the loss of workspace and the dissolution of their support structures. These women, whose livelihoods have been drastically affected by external crises, view the program as an essential step towards revitalizing their craft and regaining their economic independence. The initiative has also facilitated a critical dialogue between the artisans and government officials, paving the way for potential solutions to their predicaments.

Responding to the artisans’ needs, Mr. Gebre, head of the Axum Tourism Office, and Mr. Dawit from the Tigray Tourism Bureau have vowed to take concrete steps to assist these women. Their commitments include reorganizing pottery associations in the seven districts and liaising with governmental bodies to find alternative locations for work and sales. These actions reflect a broader commitment to addressing the systemic issues facing these artisans, demonstrating the potential for targeted skill development programs to catalyze community-wide economic recovery and empowerment.

Through the lens of Initiative Africa’s “Business for Peace” project, this training program is a testament to the power of combining cultural preservation with economic empowerment. By focusing on the female potters of Tigray, the initiative not only aims to protect an invaluable aspect of the region’s heritage but also to lay the groundwork for sustainable peace and prosperity in the aftermath of adversity. This effort marks a promising step towards the revival of the pottery industry in Tigray, offering a model for how targeted interventions can rebuild communities and restore hope.

Business for Peace: Building Business Engagement in the Upcoming National Dialogue

On April 5, 2024, at the Cassiopeia Hotel, regional chambers of commerce came together for the “Business for Peace” event, aimed at enhancing the involvement of the business sector in Ethiopia’s national dialogue. The day began with IA’s project manager delivering the opening remarks, followed by a presentation from the Ethiopian National Dialogue Commission that set the context for the discussions. This meeting provided a platform for members of regional chambers to deliberate on the challenges and opportunities for businesses in contributing to the country’s peace and economic stability.

Discussions during the event focused on several pressing issues, including the need for ethnic coexistence, the impact of VAT on small traders, the role of media in promoting informed public discourse, and the critical importance of creating job opportunities. Participants advocated for better governance, a more conducive environment for investment, and the inclusion of women in the national dialogue process. These discussions highlighted the complex relationship between peace, economic stability, and governance, reflecting on how regional chambers can play a role in these areas.

In response to the issues raised, the Dialogue Commission pointed to the importance of open dialogue in addressing fear and insecurity, the need for inclusive representation in the national dialogue, and assured the audience of the commission’s autonomy from political influences. The event underscored the importance of women’s participation, the necessity for collective action, and the role of media in supporting peacebuilding efforts.

The “Business for Peace” gathering marked an occasion for regional chambers to consider their part in Ethiopia’s broader dialogue on peace and economic recovery. While not without its challenges, the event provided a moment for reflection on the potential collective action and responsibility in navigating toward a more stable and prosperous future.

የኢኒሺየቲቭ አፍሪካ ማህበር አመታዊ ጠቅላላ ጉባኤ አካሄደ

ከሲቪል ማህበረሰብ ድርጅቶች አንዱ የሆነው ኢኒሺየቲቭ አፍሪካ ማህበር አመታዊ ጠቅላላ ጉኤውን በካሶፒያ ሆቴል የመሰብሰቢያ አዳራሽ አካሄደ፡፡

ማህበሩ እ.ኤ.አ በ2023 ካከናወናቸው ተግባራት መካከል በኢኖቬቲቭ ግራንት ፈንድ በግሉ ዘርፍ የተሰማሩት የንግድ ዘርፍ ማህበራት እና የቢዝነስ ድርጅቶች አባላትን ማብቃት እንዲሁም ንግድ ለሰላምና ልማት እና ንቁ ዜጋ የወጣቶች በጎ ፈቃድ አገልግሎት በተጨማሪም 17ኛ አዲስ አለም አቀፍ የፊልም ፌስቲቫል ፕሮግራሞች ተጠቃሽ ናቸው፡፡ ማህበሩ በዚሁ ዓመት በዋነኛነት ካጋጠሙት ችግሮች መካከል ለተለያዩ ለጋሾች ያቀረባቸው የድጋፍ ጥያቄዎች አዎንታዊ ምላሽ አለማግኘቱ ነው ተብሏል፡፡ 

ማህበሩ እ.ኤ.አ በ2024 ካቀዳቸው ስራዎች መካከል ንግድ ለሰላምና ልማት፣ በብሔራዊ ደረጃ የበጎ ፈቃደኞች አገልግሎት እና በጦርነት ምክንያት በትምህርት ወደኋላ የቀሩ ልጃገረዶች የተፋጠነ ትምህርት እንዲያገኙ ማስቻል ፕሮግራሞችና 18ኛው አዲስ አለም አቀፍ ፊልም ፌሰቲቫልን ማካሄድ እንደሆነ ለመረዳት ተችሏል፡፡

ሌላው በጉባኤው ላይ የቀረበው የማህበሩ እ.ኤ.አ የ2023 የኦዲት ሪፖርት በውጭ ኦዲተር አማካኝነት ሲሆን ማህበሩ በዚህ አመት ከለጋሾች ያገኘውን ድጋፍ 87 በመቶ ለፕሮግራም 13በመቶውን ደግሞ ለአስተዳደራዊ ወጪ መዋሉን በግልጽ ተብራርቷል፡፡ በዚህም አሉ የውጭ ኦዲተሩ ማህበሩ ያለፈው አመት የሥራ ክንውኑ የአለምና የሀገር አቀፍ የፋይናንስና የአስተዳደር ደንብና ስርዓት ጠብቆ ማከናወኑ ነው ሲሉ ገልጸዋል፡፡

የማህበሩ የጠቅላላ ጉባኤ አባላትም የቀረበላቸው የሥራ ክንውንና የኦዲት ሪፖርት እንዲሁም የዚህ አመት የሥራ እቅድ ላይ ተወያይተው ሁሉንም ሪፖርቶች በሙሉ ድምጽ አጽድቀዋል፡፡

የሲቪል ማህበረሰብ ድርጅቶች ባለሥልጣንን ለማቋቋም በወጣው አዋጅ መሰረት ኢኒሺየቲቭ አፍሪካ ጊዜውን ጠብቆ አመታዊ ሪፖርቶችን እና እቅዶችን እንዲሁም ደጋፊ መረጃዎችን አሟልቶ ማቅረቡን የባለስልጣኑ መ/ቤት ማረጋገጫ መስጠቱ ታውቋል፡፡    

Exploring the Vital Link Between Business and Peace: Initiative Africa and Addis Ababa University Host Dynamic Panel Discussion

On February 22, Initiative Africa, in collaboration with Addis Ababa University, hosted a panel discussion on the critical link between business and peace. This event, a part of the Business for Peace project, aimed to explore the role of commerce in fostering peace. Dr. Yohannes Adigeh initiated the discussion with a welcoming address, followed by presentations from esteemed speakers Dr. Tilahun Bejitual, Dr. Desalegn Amsalu, and Ato Mesfin Messela.

Under the skilled moderation of Dr. Samuel Tefera, the discussion unfolded seamlessly, with each speaker offering nuanced perspectives and practical insights. From exploring how businesses can foster stability within communities to examining the role of economic development in conflict resolution, the dialogue was rich and diverse. Attendees were actively engaged, with a robust question and answer session allowing for further exploration of key themes and ideas.

During the panel discussion, the historical connection between business and peace in Ethiopia was highlighted. The panel emphasized how previous trades and exchanges have shown the pivotal role of the private sector in fostering peace and security. Business activities have not only contributed to economic development but also played a significant role in promoting stability and social cohesion. The discussion highlighted the interdependence between business interests and peace outcomes, emphasizing that a conducive environment for business operations is essential for maintaining peace, while peace, in turn, creates favorable conditions for business growth and investment. Furthermore, panelists stressed the importance of a collaborative approach among the private sector, government, and civil society in promoting peace and security. They emphasized the need for dialogue, cooperation, and partnership to address underlying causes of conflict and build sustainable peace.

The closing remarks were delivered by Dr. Adigeh and a representative from Initiative Africa. They underscored the significance of the discussions held and reiterated the commitment of both organizations to advancing peace through collaborative efforts and knowledge-sharing. This event serves as a testament to the potential for businesses to play a constructive role in promoting societal stability and sustainable development.

Initiative Africa and Ministry of Peace Collaborate to Empower Youth

In partnership with the Ministry of Peace and with funding from the British Council, Initiative Africa recently concluded a transformative training program from February 1st to 5th, 2024. The program, part of the ongoing “Strengthening Ethiopia National Voluntary Youth Service Programme,” focused on enhancing the capacity of facilitators and coordinators.

Over the five-day training, participants engaged in comprehensive sessions aimed at equipping them with the latest tools and techniques to drive impactful change within their communities. Through interactive workshops and skill-building exercises, facilitators gained valuable insights into innovative approaches to equip youth development and community building.

The collaboration between Initiative Africa and the Ministry of Peace reflects a broader commitment to promoting peace, inclusivity, and sustainable development within Ethiopian society. By investing in the capacity-building of youth service facilitators and coordinators, the initiative aims to create positive change, contributing to a more peaceful and prosperous Ethiopia.

Looking ahead, Initiative Africa seeks to further strengthen its partnerships to continue making meaningful strides in youth empowerment and community development in Ethiopia.

የብሔራዊ የበጎ ፈቃድ አገልግሎት – ሀገራዊ አንድነትን ለማጎልበት

በብሔራዊ የበጎ ፈቃድ ማህበረሰብ አገልግሎት ፕሮግራም ላይ እየተሳተፉ ላሉ አካላት የ4 ቀናት ስልጠና በአዳማ ድሬ ሆቴል መሰብሰቢያ አዳራሽ ተካሄደ፡፡

ስልጠናው በብሔራዊ ፈቃድ ማህበረሰብ አገልግሎት የተሻሻሉ ሞጅሎች/ኮርሶች ላይ የረዳት አመቻቾችና አስተባባሪዎችን አቅም ማሳደግ ላይ ያተኮረ ሲሆን ከስልጠናው አዲስ አበባ እና ድሬደዋ አስተዳደርን ጨምሮ ከ12 ክልሎች የተውጣጡ 114 ሰልጣኞችን በሁለት ቦታ በመክፈል ነው፡፡

መርሃ ግብሩ የተነደፈው ሀገራዊ አንድነትን ለማጎልበት፣ ሰላማዊ አብሮ መኖርን፣ ማህበራዊ ትስስርና ዘላቂ ሰላምን ለማስፈን እንዲሁም ወጣቶችን በቁርጠኝነት፣ በተወዳዳሪነትና በስራ ፈጣሪነት አቅማቸውን በማጎልበት በኢትዮጵያ ማህበራዊና ኢኮኖሚያዊ እድገት የበኩላቸውን አስተዋጽኦ ለማበርከት መሆኑን በእለቱ ተነግሯል፡፡

ፕሮግራሙ ለሰልጣኞች በምክንያታዊነት ማሰብና መኖር እንዲችሉ እንዲሁም የበጎ ፈቃድ የማህበረሰብ አገልግሎት ተግባራት ውስጥ ሲሰማሩ ችግር መፍታትና የማሰብ፣ ራስን የማወቅና የግንኙነት ክህሎቶቻቸውን በማሳደግ በሀገረ መንግስት ግንባታ ያላቸውን ሚና እውቀትና ክህሎቶቻቸውን በመገንባት ላይ ዙሪያ ባጠነጠኑ ጉዳዮች ላይ ስልጠና ተሰጥቷል፡፡

ስልጠናውን በንግግር የዘጉት በኢፊድሪ በሰላም ሚኒስቴር የብሔራዊ ፈቃድና ማህበረሰብ አገልግሎት የክትትልና ድጋፍ ዳይሬክተር የሆኑት አቶ ተስፋዬ ሙለታ ሲሆኑ እሳቸውም ሰልጣኞች ወደ የአካባቢያቸው ሲመለሱ ያገኙትን እውቀት ለራሳቸው ብቻ ሳይሆን  ብዙ ወጣቶችን በማስተባበርና በማፍራት አሰልጥኖ ማብቃት ላይ ያተኮረ ተግባር ማከናወን እንደሚገባቸው አስገንዝበዋል፡፡

ስለስልጠናው አጠቃላይ ሁኔታ የአንዳንድ ሰልጣኞችን አስተያየት ለመቃኘት ሞክረናል፡፡ በቅድሚያ ወጣት ካህመር ታዬን አስተያየት ነበር የተቀበልነው፡፡ ወጣቱ የመጣው ከሲዳማ ክልል ይርጋለም ዞን ሲሆን እሱም “ስልጠናው ካለንበት ነባራዊ ሁኔታ አንፃር መነቃቃትን ፈጥሮልናል” ብሏል፡፡ ሌላው አስተያት ሰጪ ወ/ሪት ደበሌ አያና ትባላለች፡፡ የባሌ ሮቤ ዞን ሰላም አስተባባሪ ስትሆን “በዚህ ስልጠና ስሳተፍ የመጀመሪያ ጊዜዬ ነው፡፡ ስልጠናው ጊዜ አጭር ቢሆንም በስልጠናው ብዙ እውቀት አግኝቼበታለሁ፡፡ ከነበረኝ አስተሳሰብ ከፍ እንድል አድርጎልኛል፡፡ ይህ ስልጠና ጊዜ ተሰጥቶት ተከታታይነት ባለው መልኩ ቢደረግ ይመረጣል” ስትል ገልፃለች፡፡

ወርቅነህ መራ የተባለው የጎንደር ሰላም አስተባባሪ ደግሞ ስልጠናውን ስሳተፍ የመጀመሪያ ጊዜዬ ቢሆንም “በዚህ ስልጠና ከተለያዩ የአገራችን ክልሎች የመጡ ወጣቶችን በአንድ ጠረጴዛ ዙሪያ ያሳተፈ በመሆኑ እርስ በእርስ እንድንነጋገር ባለው ወቅታዊ ሁኔታ የጋራ ሀሳብ እንድንይዝ አድርጎናል፡፡ ስልጠናውም አሁን ካለን አስተሳሰብ አሻግረን እንድናይ ያስቻለን ነው” ሲል ተናግሯል፡፡

ይህ ስልጠና የተካሄደው ኢኒሺየቲቭ አፍሪካ ከኢፌድሪ ሰላም ሚኒስቴር እና ብሪትሽ ካውንስል ጋር በመተባበር መሆኑ ታውቋል፡፡

A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) Signed Between the National Rehabilitation Commission and the Ethiopian Chamber of Commerce and Sectoral Association

On January 16, 2024, a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed between the National Rehabilitation Commission (NRC) and the Ethiopian Chamber of Commerce and Sectorial Association (ECCSA) in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. The signing was facilitated by Initiative Africa (IA) as part of its Business for Peace Project.

The Business for Peace Project , which has been implemented by IA for the past two year, seeks to integrate the private sector in the peacebuilding process of the country. This MoU represents an important step forward.

Ambassador Teshome Toga, representing the National Rehabilitation Commission, and Eng. Melaku Ezezew, representing the Ethiopian Chamber of Commerce and Sectorial Associations, formalized the agreement during the signing ceremony.

The primary objective of this collaboration is to forge a united front in the rehabilitation and reintegration process, emphasizing the implementation of the Disarmament, Demobilization, and Reintegration (DDR) program. This MoU signifies a pivotal step towards fostering peace, stability, and sustainable development in the region.

To ensure the effective execution of the MoU, all participating parties have committed to establishing a dedicated technical committee. This committee will play a crucial role in supporting the seamless facilitation of the rehabilitation and reintegration initiatives outlined in the agreement.

The signing of this MoU not only reinforces the commitment to peacebuilding but also serves as a testament to the power of partnerships in addressing complex social challenges. The combined efforts of these organizations are expected to have a lasting impact on the lives of individuals affected by conflict, promoting stability and prosperity in the region.

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The Process of Rebuilding Axum’s Airport has Begun

Recent reports have brought encouraging news, signaling the commencement of the official reconstruction process for Aksum Airport. This marks a significant milestone as the airport had previously lain in ruins due to the conflict with Tigray, which, in turn, had a detrimental impact on the country’s business sector. For quite some time, the process of restoring the airport had remained stagnant, but there is now tangible progress through the means of the Procurement of materials needed to repair Aksum Airport.

The regional maintenance process coordinator, Ato Tewolde Girmay, who is based at Ethiopian Airlines’ headquarters, has confirmed that the airline has begun the process of obtaining crucial materials for the maintenance of the airport. This significant development represents a major step forward in the efforts to restore critical infrastructure.

Initiative Africa has been an unwavering advocator for the reconstruction of the airport. In close collaboration with the Center for International Private Enterprises (CIPE), they recently organized a highly informative and engaging conference in Axum. The conference provided a platform for experts and stakeholders to explore various strategies for leveraging the airport’s revival to stimulate economic growth in the country. This collaborative effort has injected a fresh sense of urgency and purpose into the mission, and it has been instrumental in voicing the cause.

Regrettably, it is worth noting that the airport’s restoration will not be completed in time for the annual Zion Maryam holiday, which falls on the 21st of Hidar. This religious holiday holds significant importance in the Axum region and is widely celebrated, underscoring the need for continued efforts in revitalizing this essential infrastructure for the broader community.

Source: TIKVAH