Christmas donation 2012 for Ethiopia

For many years now at Christmas time, a generous Memmert donation has been sent to the SOS-Kinderdorf (SOS Children’s Village). Last Christmas, managing director Christiane Riefler-Karpa had made available the sum of 40,000 € for the construction of an SOS Children’s Village in Ethiopia. The buildings of the SOS Children’s Village in Addis Ababa, opened in 1981, have been gradually torn down since 2010 and replaced with new buildings. With the help of the Memmert Christmas donation, the financing of a large proportion of the new buildings was ensured at the end of 2011. But there is still much to be done in one of the most underdeveloped countries in the world.

Due to the discovery of bones over 4 million years old, of the ancestors of modern human beings, the region at the Horn of Africa is dubbed the “Cradle of Mankind“. Despite the thousands of years old culture and, by African standards, an untold wealth of fertile land, hunger and poverty are the order of the day. On the Human Development Index 2011 of the United Nations, in which criteria such as schooling, life expectation and per capita income are reflected, Ethiopia occupies place 174 out of 187.

Helping to provide self-help

An improved agricultural usage of water-rich areas, along with the development of mineral resources and regenerative sources of energy – but above all the ending of the conflict with neighbour Eritrea – could offer people the possibility in the long term of becoming independent of western development aid. A basic prerequisite however is a good education of children through institutions such as the SOS Children’s Villages, training centres and youth facilities.

Six SOS Children’s Villages have been built in Ethiopia since 1974, a seventh is currently under construction. Up to 150 children, whose parents have died or do not have the financial resources to feed them, live in the institution in Addis Ababa, in 15 family houses. The incorporated SOS nursery is attended by a further 125 children from the direct vicinity. After 30 years, the buildings were so worn out that it seemed sensible to tear down the old buildings one by one and replace them with new ones, rather than renovate them.

For Christmas 2012, Memmert has again generously supported the SOS Children’s Village. Because there we can be sure that our aid really will reach the children and not fall into corrupt hands.
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