Ethiopia. COOPI gives back hope for a respectable life in a context of unrelenting violence
29-03-2024 | di COOPI

Ethiopia. COOPI gives back hope for a respectable life in a context of unrelenting violence

The unprecedented spiral of violence in Ethiopia has created significant human suffering and massive displacement, damaging or destroying essential infrastructure in urban centers theaters of clashes and ethnic tensions not only in the Tigray region, but also the Amhara and Afar. With the Integrated assistance and resilience support intervention for the displaced population and host communities in the conflict-affected areas of Amhara Regional State (North Shewa and Oromia Special Zones) started in July 2022 and ended in April 2024, COOPI, together with CUAMM and the local partner Enhanced Rural Self Help Association (ERSHA), is restoring urgent resources and services in the areas of health, water, and food security necessary for the recovery of decent livelihoods and livelihoods of IDPs and host communities in the North Shewa and Oromia Special zones.

Thanks to funds from AICS, COOPI and CUAMM have completed some key activities for displaced persons and local communities. Despite a drastically worsening security situation in the project implementation areas, which since February 2024 have seen escalating fighting and subsequent road blockages making it difficult for beneficiaries to reach, COOPI rehabilitated the water scheme at Abye Primary School in Debressina, constructing both a water tower with a water tank and new water distribution points and piping, while the 24 latrines at Abye Middle School and 4 latrines at Shewa Robit Primary School were rehabilitated. In addition, COOPI rehabilitated the water scheme at Shewa Robit health center, where a tower with a tank and new water points were installed, but also rehabilitated 21 sinks for different rooms in the health center, including laboratories and delivery rooms.

The project also saw COOPI staff active in the installation of electromechanical pumping equipment, which is crucial to ensure the restoration of the functionality of basic water schemes in the town of Debre Birhan.

But COOPI's activities are not limited to access to water and health. In the agriculture and food security sector, activities were implemented to support improved access to key resources, such as a training to 22 farmers on vermicompost in February 2024 and the distribution of seeds and seedlings in the woredas Antsokiya Gemza, Efratan Gidim, and Kewot. To decrease the consumption of firewood for cooking injera, given the scarcity of natural resources faced by many displaced people due to the conflict, the remaining 700 beneficiaries, a total of 4,000, were selected to be distributed improved energy-efficient stoves in Ataye 02 and Ataye 03 housing units.

COOPI has been intervening in Ethiopia since 1995 by implementing both humanitarian assistance and development programs in different regions of the country and providing assistance to save lives and help communities recover from shocks. In Ethiopia, COOPI promotes long-term preparedness through interventions to improve basic services and support livelihoods. It has for years focused on fulfilling the right to water, sanitation and hygiene as well as improving the food security of the most vulnerable groups by supplementing and diversifying livelihoods and increasing productive capacities.