Book Aid International has been sending books to Ethiopia since 1968. In 2014 we supplied our partner organisations in Ethiopia with 63,213 books. Many of these went to local NGO CODE Ethiopia, who distributed the books to 15 regional community libraries, plus primary and secondary schools and 10 further and higher education colleges. A large quantity also went to the Ethiopian Knowledge and Technology Transfer Society (EKTTS), a local organisation supporting education in Ethiopia through sourcing and distributing donations of books and computers across the country.
Human development index ranking: 173 out of 186 countries*
Adult literacy: 39%**
Net attendance in primary education (enrolment figures not available): male 64%, female 65%**
Net attendance in secondary education (enrolment figures not available): male 16%, female 16%**
Why we work in Ethiopia
In recent decades Ethiopia has faced conflict, wide-scale drought and massive refugee problems. It shares borders with six countries in a region with huge social, political and environmental challenges. UNHCR report that since 2009 there has been an almost three-fold increase in refugees in the country, mainly women and children from neighbouring Somalia, Sudan and Eritrea.
Literacy and learning are essential to help people escape from poverty and to contribute to improved health and community development, but Ethiopia faces many challenges. Adult literacy is low, as is enrolment levels in secondary schools. Many children walk long distances over difficult terrain to attend schools that are under-resourced, with crowded classrooms and poorly trained teachers.
There are many fantastic community development projects confronting these challenges, and we are proud to support the local organisations striving to improve access to education. Moreover, the government clearly take literacy seriously as they are investing a lot in libraries, building many new libraries throughout the country. There is also a tangible commitment to libraries in schools. However the impact they have in the local community could be considerably improved with training for library staff and more resources. We’re therefore excited to see how libraries will continue to progress in Ethiopia over the coming years and look forward to working with our partners to respond to the existing challenges.