As a boy, our Advisory Member Desta Seyoum lived a traditional rural farming life in the same Ethiopian Kebele as The Duna-Sadicho School. He remembers passing through Duna Sadicho village on his way to Secondary School giving him many chances to witness the needs of the community.
Desta, who now lives in London, just returned from Ethiopia after a prolonged family visit in the region and was able to talk to us more about inequalities in Duna Sadicho, specifically addressing the problems that girls face in the region. He is very worried about gender inequality at Duna Sadicho School, and quickly points out the number of girls drops even lower at the secondary school level as girls are unable to pass the required national exam to continue their education.
“Many girls in the region face challenges of gender inequality that exclude them from school. Extreme household poverty, walking distance to school, inadequate school resources, lack of sanitation facilities, child labor and marriage, and female genital cutting are among obstacles that prevent girls from education. Lack of education means girls forced into informal labor market at an early age. They will never reach their potential to become positive forces in their communities, and remain trapped in a vicious circle of poverty.”
While data seems to show that gender inequality is narrowing at other area schools, the gender gaps remain a problem at Duna Sadicho. Desta feels that the gender makeup at Duna Sadicho may be largely associated with what happens in the school as well as in the community. According to Desta,
“the lower number of girls may have a direct correlation with the poor quality of resources they have in the school. It may also reflect the level of poverty and poor living standards of the community.”
Desta points out that a gender audit may be required to deepen our understanding of girls’ education in the region. But for now, one thing is very clear to Desta,
“providing basic learning resources is imperative so that girls may have an equitable chance of continuing their education.”
By providing school children with essential learning materials, Roots Ethiopia will help rectify the gender inequality at The Duna Sadicho primary school. These basic learning supplies will give girls what they need to stay in school, pass their national exams, have the opportunity to continue education, stand a chance of going to college, securing an employment and eventually becoming significant contributors to their community.
Help Ethiopia by donating to The Duna Sadicho project today! We are 40% of the way there and need your help in taking step one to rectify the gender imbalance at this rural Ethiopian School.
Roots Ethiopia is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization working in Africa, specifically helping Southern Ethiopia. Roots Ethiopia supports community identified solutions for job creation and education.