From 2014-2017, the Changemakers supported a project in seven communities in the Oromia region of rural Ethiopia. The project improved access to quality education for 6,000 children and increased community awareness of the barriers to education, especially for girls. This 3 year project worked with communities, teachers and local governments to improve the learning environment and provided access to clean water and toilet facilities in 7 schools.
The project was one of the most successful that ActionAid has ever implemented in Ethiopia.
Key achievements of the Changemakers 1 project were:
- Transformed 7 primary schools by constructing and furnishing 28 classrooms, 7 interactive learning centres, 4 libraries, and toilet blocks and water wells at each school. Changemakers also provided books, teaching and learning materials and media equipment. The schools now have some of the best educational facilities in their districts.
- 5,593 children enrolled across the seven schools when the new facilities opened in 201. By 2021, 10,693 pupils are now attending the schools. The project has had a significant positive impact on enrolment rates, dropout rates, attendance and academic performance across all 7 schools.
- The quality of teaching in the district has improved and the new schools are attracting some of the best teachers in the area. The schools now have greater capacity and one of the schools was able to take on grades 7 and 8 students for the first time.
- Community involvement in the project has dramatically increased local commitment to education, and there has been a substantial shift in the attitudes and perceptions of community members, particularly boys and men, towards girls’ education.