Despite high economic growth in recent years, Ethiopia remains one of the poorest countries in Africa. Repeated emergencies and disasters and poorly funded social services mean many women and children are living in extreme poverty.
In a society that respects traditional values, inequality is part of women’s everyday life. Harmful cultural practices, such as female genital mutilation and early and forced marriage, are widespread. And domestic violence is a daily occurrence. More girls miss out on education in Ethiopia than anywhere else in Africa and it also has one of the highest maternal mortality rates in the world.
Women’s rights in Ethiopia
- 74% of women have undergone female genital mutilation (Source: UNICEF 2013)
- 41% of girls are married before they are 18 (Source: UNICEF 2013)
- 8% of all married women have been abducted into marriage (Source: Ethiopia Demographic and Health Survey 2005)
- 68% of women believe their husbands have a right to beat them (Source: Ethiopia Demographic and Health Survey 2011)
- 49% of women in Ethiopia have experienced physical violence from a partner while 59% have experienced sexual violence from a partner (Source: UN Women 2011-12)
- Less than 1 in 5 girls enroll in secondary education (Source: The Worlds Women 2010: Trends and Statistics)
We are working with 4 local women’s rights organisations; Integrated Community Education and Development Association (ICEDA); KMG; Siiqqee Women’s Development Association (Siiqqee) and the Association for Women’s Sanctuary and Development (AWSAD) towards:
- Encouraging girls to stay in school
- Engaging communities to abandon harmful traditional practices
- Giving women control over their own livelihoods to protect themselves from violence
- Supporting women and girls survivors of violence
Making a difference
In 2013 the work of our partners directly improved the lives of over 290,000 women, men, girls and boys in Ethiopia.
- Over 170,000 women and girls learnt about violence against women and harmful traditional practices, enabling them to speak out in their communities
- More than 2,000 women were supported to earn their own income by taking part in business skills training and learning about savings and credit groups
- Over 3,500 women claimed their rights and accessed justice with legal assistance
- Over 4,000 female students received educational support, improving their future opportunities and keeping them safe from harmful traditional practices