Helping people affected by conflict in Ethiopia 

Published: Apr 21, 2022 Reading time: 3 minutes
Helping people affected by conflict in Ethiopia 
© People In Need

Abera Tadesse is a 40-year-old farmer and a father of seven—two boys and five girls—who was forced to leave his home due to the conflict in the Southern Nations and Nationalities and People’s Region (SNNPR), Ethiopia. Thanks to support from People in Need, he could make it through the conflict, return home, and work towards a better future for his family.   

Political instability and ethnic armed conflicts over the territory in Alle special woreda, Derashe, and Konso district has been ongoing since 2018. While border disputes are common across Ethiopia, the scale of destruction in Alle is significantly different from that seen previously. Some 94,000 people have reportedly been displaced. People fleeing violence often have to travel hundreds of kilometres—leaving their possessions and agricultural land behind. Such people lose their only source of livelihood. The Internally displaced people (IDPs) come without any means of livelihood; they live without shelter in places with no essential protection or minimal hygiene and sanitation conditions.  

Abera and his family lived in the Konso Zone until conflict forced them to leave on short notice. They left everything behind, and they have had to find a new life in Gewada kebele. The journey was long, especially for his pregnant wife at the time. However, once they reached Gewada kebele, the host community was very welcoming and offered them a place to stay until the conflict settled down.  

PIN support 65,000 IDPs 

In Alle special woreda, the People in Need’s (PIN) emergency program funded by the European Union Civil Protection & Humanitarian Aid (ECHO) commenced working on August 21, 2021. So far we have supported 400 households with cash grants, shelter, and NFIs (non-food items). Through the program, PIN has donated shelters, cooking supplies, sanitary supplies, jerry cans and blankets to 261 vulnerable households who have been displaced in Gewada kebele.

Abera and his family stayed with the host community for a month, and they received donations from PIN.  “We received blankets, plastic sheets, floor mats, cooking supplies, towels, rope,” Abera says.

“My family and I are very grateful. These items are very useful, and we wouldn’t have been able to afford them on our own.”

As soon as the conflict settled down, Abera brought his family back to their village. "No one understands the value of peace until it has gone," said Abera in tears. PIN has provided shelter at first for Abera, and we have subsequently provided his family and cash grant donations. With this cash and the help of others, he was able to buy supplies to rebuild his house and later build a new house for his family.  He was also able to buy new shoes, clothes, and school supplies for his children, who are back at school. “I believe so much in education and want my children to learn and study and have a good life,” says Abera.    

Autor: Mihiret Wasihun   

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