Project Ethiopia October 2002: Support for Messret Elementary School in Gondar very successful

On October 16 we traveled to Ethiopia. The historical sites and the beautiful nature tempted us to visit this off the beaten track holiday destination. The country has made an everlasting impression on us. The inhabitants are poor and there is a lack of practically everything that is ‘normal’ in our world; paved roads, electricity, running water, telephone, medical help, food…….. The majority of the population lives in sod huts, which are clustered in the landscape per four or five huts, which is a beautiful sight.

The school:  At Messret Elementary School in Gondar 1200 children are taught daily. As is usual throughout Ethiopia, there are morning classes and afternoon classes. The children go to school for half a day so that they are also able to work. We can see for ourselves that school classes are chockfull; 75 tot 100 children per classroom. The school buildings are poor and have no doors, windows or lighting and look scanty. There is not enough furniture and the children have to sit very close to each other in the school benches or on the floor. A number of classes are taught outside during our visit.

The result: In co-ordination with Mebratu Assress, the director of the school, we decided to buy 80 new school benches from the local factory with the collected money. Although the school buildings have many defects, Mr Assress indicated that the school furniture is essential for good education. Our large collections of items brought from the Netherlands comprised of 40 skipping-ropes, English lessons books, color pencils, various games and an extensive first-aid box. The teachers were also very happy with the English and Amharic lessons books, which we were able to buy in the capital city of Addis Ababa.

Grateful: The gratitude we received from the children, the school management and teachers was overwhelming. It is very clear that a school such as Messret Elementary School has a hard life without the help of foreign organizations. We therefore would like to thank everybody very much for their donations, and the trust put in TravellingAid


The country: The democratic republic of Ethiopia is situated between Sudan, Somalia, Eritrea, Djibouti en Kenya and has a surface of 1,098.000 square kilometers. Ethiopia comprises 58 million inhabitants. The country’s economy is for 2/3 dependent on the revenues of coffee. 

The City of Gondar comprises 300,000 inhabitants and is situated at 2000 meters in the North-West of the country.