Madrid, February 13th – With the aim of carrying out an adequate follow-up of the projects in which the Parentes Foundation collaborates, Belén Alcolado, responsible for development cooperation projects, has travelled to Ethiopia, taking advantage of this visit to promote new initiatives.

The Parentes Foundation is currently collaborating with different projects in Ethiopia, a country ravaged by war in the Tigray region, where more than half of its 77 million inhabitants live below the poverty line. The work of the Parentes Foundation focuses on promoting education, since in the Ethiopian context, the illiteracy rate is around 52% according to data from the CIA World Factbook 2021.

In the words of Belén Alcolado “Our projects are aimed at strengthening infant and primary schools, which need support to rehabilitate or expand their facilities and thus respond to the educational needs of the population. The schools are in rural areas where there are many children, but few that offer quality education and accessibility conditions for the most vulnerable families. We are also supporting the creation of classrooms adapted for children with disabilities, in order to favour their schooling and integration.

During the visit, the final result of the project “Expansion and adaptation of a nursery and primary school in Sagure (Oromia region)” was presented. This school, which belongs to the Missionary Sisters of the Holy Rosary, has just inaugurated two new classrooms, a dining room, an administrative building and a teachers’ room, as well as a well that supplies the facilities and guarantees access to water for the entire educational community. This project has been carried out in collaboration with the Action, Development and Sustainability Foundation (ADS), which has been present in Ethiopia since 2005. Similarly, the progress of the project “Expansion and adaptation of a primary school in Yirgalema (Sidama region)” managed by the Comboni Missionaries of the Heart of Jesus was also supervised.

The coordinator of development cooperation projects expressed her satisfaction with the work of the organisations present on the ground: “A very good job is being done, the institutions with which we collaborate have been working in the area for a long time, they have the confidence of the communities, who value the quality of education offered, and they have a great knowledge of the social and family needs. They encourage families to get involved in school activities and accompany the education of their children,” explains Belén Alcolado.

Alcolado also visited three other schools where work will begin in March to improve and expand their facilities. Two of them are located in the towns of Jimma (Oromia Region) and Semera (Afar Region) belonging to the Missionaries of Charity and the third one in Dida (Mareko Region) managed by the Salesian Missionaries. Finally, another initiative that the Parentes Foundation will soon launch in the Vicariate of Hawassa is the “Good teaching practices” course that will be taught in at least 27 of its schools, with the aim of improving teacher training.