እንኳን ደህና መጣችሁ ጓደኞቻችን

Enkwan dehna metachuh gwadegno-chachen

(Welcome OUR Friends!)

Program Background:

Weledi, Ethiopia is a rural community in the heart of the Ethiopian Hillside. It is located 6 hours by car from Addis Ababa, the capital city and 45 minutes from Kombolcha. This community is part of the Amhara region of Ethiopia and has an approximate 50:50 split between Amhara and Oromo communities. This relationship makes it a very strong and vibrant community of 5,000 people and center to five other communities for a total of 25,000. They share a Wednesday market day, a clinic and schools. Weledi’s main source of employment is provided by a large farm that employs ~40% but it suffers from unstable workload with a daily salary of approximately $0.75. 30% work in subsistence farming, 10% in the government and clinic, 20% micro entrepreneurs.

Past Project Work:

EWB-USA got first involved with Weledi in 2013 in a partnership between the EWB Central Houston Professional Chapter (EWB-CHP) and Outreach Ethiopia, an organization dedicated to support orphaned children in Weledi with foster parents, housing, education resources and continuous support. They saw the need for infrastructure support. In 2014, a team from the EWB-CHP travel on an assessment trip and identified sanitation as the first project to tackle due to the need to minimize marketplace health problems as open defecation was constant due to the lack of easily available latrines during market days. During such days, EWB members observed an increase in community membership of 1,000 people with their produce laid on the grounds presenting a significant potential for health problem.

Design of the latrines took place from 2014 to 2016. Due to political unrest, the team was unable to travel in 2016 and was guided to postpone the trip until April 2017. The project team, working hand in hand with, the community and with the continuous support of Organization for Rehabilitation and Development in Amhara (ORDA), a local NGO, constructed two Ventilated Improved Pit (VIP) Latrines in the marketplace to increase sanitation. The design also included hand washing stations, a water tank and water resource access. Each latrine contains four stalls, separated for male and females.

Construction of the pit latrines in the marketplace.

Construction of the pit latrines in the marketplace.

The final pit latrines.

The final pit latrines.

Future Project Work:

During this trip, a pre-assessment of next projects was conducted allowing the identification of three main areas of need and potential future projects:

1) Flood management during the monsoon season (June-September)

1) Flood management during the monsoon season (June-September)

2) Clinic and maternity ward repairs and expansion

2) Clinic and maternity ward repairs and expansion

3) School expansion

3) School expansion

Currently, the project is being transferred from the EWB-CHP to the EWB- San Francisco Professional Chapter to continue with this great work. And we are looking for great volunteers like YOU to help us continue the immense impact that EWB and our working hands can do for others. Contact us ASAP!

 Project Plan:

  • Put together a project team

  • Evaluate priorities with community – potential monitoring & assessment trip

  • Choose appropriate project

  • Develop projects in stages:

    • Monsoon – (1) Study surface runoff (2) Create mitigation (3) Design flood control

    • Clinic – (1) Assess current structure (2) Plan repairs (3) Design maternity ward

    • School – (1) Evaluate max capacity (2) Design classroom expansion

  • Implement the highest priority project

 We are looking for:

  • Civil / Structural Engineers

  • Drafters / CAD designers

  • Water resources and land development support

  • Health services expertise

  • Amharic speakers and translators

  • Tech advisors and engineers of record to oversee development

  • Sociologist and education chair

  • Fundraising chair

  • Awesome working hands that can support our development


  • Check out the Events Calendar for upcoming team meetings and fundraisers

  • E-mail to find out about getting involved on this team

  • Join us in the fall at SFari 2019, our annual fundraiser

  • Make a donation! All funds, whether $5 or $500, help the teams in changing someone’s life