Tuesday, August 01, 2006



In Ethiopia, formal education is restricted to families that can afford the cost of uniforms, school materials, and books. For the 150,000 to 600,000 child laborers living and working on the streets of Ethiopia, obtaining a formal education is a faint possibility.One of the fundamental causes of child labor is extreme poverty. Poor families in Ethiopia like in other developing countries, engage their children in child labor in order to confront the immediate impact of poverty—the inability to secure basic necessities such as food, shelter, clothing and medicine. In essence, the child's economic contribution is vital to the survival of impoverished families.

Poor parents are cognizant of the fact that educating their children would increase their future earning potential and standard of living, yet poverty-stricken families are unable to afford the “luxury” of forgoing their children’s contribution to the family income. Subsequently, a conflict evolves between the short-term economic interests of the family and the long-term interests of the child.In response to this conflict and the increasing number of children who have their right to education denied, the Family and Child Enrichment Program (FACE) was created.

The mission of FACE is to ensure that orphaned and vulnerable children (OVC) from poverty-stricken and HIV/AIDS affected families have sufficient means and resources to complete their education, as well as to ensure these families have the proper financial assistance to confront the immediate impact of poverty.

Under FACE monetary assistance is provided in the form of a monthly scholarship to OVC from poverty-stricken and/or HIV/AIDS affected families. These families with school age children (4 to18 years old) are allocated scholarships on the condition that their children are enrolled in school, maintain a monthly attendance of 90%—(no more that 2 absences per month), and go for periodic medical check ups. The purpose of the scholarship is threefold:
1. To defray the short-term impact of poverty: the inability to secure basic necessities such as food, shelter, clothing and medicine;
2. To off-set the opportunity cost of sending children to school—the value of work the child would perform if he or she were not in school;
3. To defray the indirect costs imposed on poor families—school supplies, school uniforms and transportation.

Consistent with our aim to empower women, participating families will have an account opened in the mother’s name, so that the monthly scholarship can be distributed directly to the mother’s account. Empirical research (IFPRI Perspectives, 2002) indicates that “when women control assets, expenditures on children’s education increase and the rate of illness among girls drops.”FACE beneficiaries are provided with a uniform and school supplies, in addition to having their registration and tuition fees covered. The monthly amount of the scholarship is 174 Ethiopian Birr ($20) for both girls and boys.

To learn more and/or get involved with Project FACE go to www.allianceinvestment.org

1 comment:

crunkest. said...


My name is Samira Abderahman, we met at the BADR conference.

I'm from Dallas, TX, and I'm 16 years old w/no job; a Junior in HS.

I'm pretty active in the Ethiopian-Muslim, Muslim, and Youth-Muslim communities.

So, what can I do?