Imagine not having the food staples needed to cook for your family. Imagine if each morning you left your home with one goal: to make enough money that day to put dinner on the table that evening. And then think about how you will pay for the other basic needs like clothing and shelter. How will you pay for school uniforms and books?
The caregivers of the students at Studio Samuel make a sacrifice when they enroll their girls. Training for Tomorrow* is held after-school and on weekends, a time when a teenage girl is of great value to a household. During these hours the girls could take on jobs to help bring in extra money for the household. They could be cleaning, washing clothes or watching after younger children so an elder could be out working. Child labor is a common barrier for girls living in poverty and it’s not unusual for a family to pull a daughter from school entirely so she can contribute to the household income.
We have much respect for the caregivers of our students who see the value in education, to ensure the girls have opportunities in life. 100 caregivers were recently invited to the training center for a coffee ceremony and short presentation to update them on the students great work and progress. Caregivers were then gifted with cooking oil, a food staple used in most Ethiopian meals. Each gift will last a household of 5-6 people approximately two months. The gifts were received with surprise, smiles and much gratitude.
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* Training for Tomorrow is a life skills curriculum aimed to create opportunities for at-risk girls.