Providing a Permanent Solution to Cyclical Poverty
Our neighborhoods in central Ethiopia are plagued by acute poverty. This impoverishment presents immense challenges ranging from nutrition-related illness, to illiteracy, to lack of employment opportunities. Lelt foundation provides efficient, ethical aid while preventing dependency-based assistance.
The Lelt Foundation works with families living in extreme poverty who do not want a handout – they want a solution. We've developed a strategy that incorporates 3 main components of assistance:
We tackle malnutrition by offering balanced daily meals and food rations for struggling families.
Once our children are well-fed and healthy, we focus on providing an advanced education.
We offer adult education classes and job training seminars to the parents in our community, empowering them to become financially independent and sustainable.
Good health begins with nutrition. When a child join’s Lelt’s program, we provide a daily nutritious meal and treat him for any malnutrition-related illnesses.
His family takes home monthly food rations so they are eating at home, as well. When children are eating regularly, they can focus on their schoolwork and education.
In poverty-stricken neighborhoods like ours, a large percentage of children do not attend school. A variety of factors keep these kids home; often the child is taking care of siblings or a sick parent, or working to help provide extra income. Less than 40% of school-aged children graduate from elementary school, perpetuating the cycle of poverty. No education = no job skills.
Lelt Foundation focuses on providing advanced education for students in our program. Thanks to a partnership with several private schools in our region, more than 55% of our children are receiving an advanced-curriculum education. For our children attending public schools, Lelt has after-school tutoring courses at our Community Center daily, so children can stay at the top of their classes and prepare for college admissions.
A reliable income is the key for families to pull themselves out of cyclical poverty. Lelt Foundation has developed a Business Creation Program that empowers unemployed parents to start their own small businesses, as Alem created her own sheep farm (left). Parents take a seminar that teaches money and business management skills, and when they are ready to launch their own small business, Lelt provides a micro-loan for start-up costs. This program has been extremely successful in our community, with new business owners averaging 30% higher salaries after training.
Lelt also offers a scholarship program for vocational training. Participants apply to receive a full schloarship to top vocational institutions specializing in professions with a shortage of workers. This training has enabled our community members to find employment in cosmetology, auto mechanics, and hospitality.
After we implement our programs and provide nutritional health, education, and job opportunities to our community, we evaluate the progress. Lelt monitors the success rates of our children’s education and our parent’s employment through data collection and interviews.
In addition, our programs are audited and analyzed by the family welfare division of the Ethiopian government. Our ratings have been some of the highest in the region for the past 6 years.