While Ethiopia boasts Africa’s fastest-growing economy, a third of the population remains impoverished. The majority of Ethiopians live and work in rural areas, with few possibilities to pursue ambitions other than supporting their families’ fundamental requirements. Hundreds of thousands of children lost their parents as a result of the HIV epidemic in the 1980s and 1990s. Approximately 4.5 million Ethiopian children are orphaned or separated from their families today, and the country continues to struggle with maternal mortality, nutrition, and gender inequality. Holt works with sponsors and supporters to assist Ethiopia’s most vulnerable children grow in their families’ love. Many families in rural Ethiopia subsist on what they can grow on their land. Poverty is widespread, and only a small percentage of youngsters attend school. Sponsors and donations to Holt help families become more stable by funding initiatives that increase their income and provide children with the nourishment and education they need to fulfill their full potential. In 2010, Holt teamed up with a local church to build a three-room stone schoolhouse in Wallana’s remote southern section. Holt employed local instructors and social workers with the help of donations, and outfitted the school with desks, seats, and chalkboards, while sponsors gave uniforms, books, and materials for the students.
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