Educational support for girls in Ethiopia

by Enhance Worldwide
Educational support for girls in Ethiopia
Educational support for girls in Ethiopia
Educational support for girls in Ethiopia
Educational support for girls in Ethiopia
Educational support for girls in Ethiopia
Educational support for girls in Ethiopia

Dear Friends of Enhance Worldwide,

Our summer school program -- now in its 5th year -- ensures investment in girls year round.  Girls in resource-poor settings who attend summer programs are less likely to encounter sexual abuse and exploitation and are more likely to return to school in the fall.  And that's exactly what we want: to ensure that our girls have a safe summer and then walk back into the classroom in September.  Our summer program combines education, protection, and social-emotional learning to provide girls with exciting, engaging experiences to ensure their wellbeing and increase their academic success.

And our team in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia continues to confront new challenges.  The Malala Fund's Full Force initiative reports that nearly one billion girls and young women lack the 21st century skills to succeed and that this gender digital divide is growing.  In sub-Saharan Africa, data demonstrates an urban-rural digital divide wider than other developing regions of the Global South, with student-to-device ratios exceeding 100:1 and women's internet access is 25% lower than men's.

Digital access and literacy are a core component of our summer school program to challenge this gender digital divide.  Your generous support provides a continuum of resources from primary school through university/technical school, ensuring girls and young women are empowered in rapidly changing world.

On behalf of the entire Enhance Worldwide team, thank you for standing up for girls!

- Ashley Lackovich-Van Gorp & Heather Mahardy

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Dear Friends of Enhance Worldwide,

The last official survey on street children in Addis Ababa was conducted in 2010, when UNICEF estimated that there were 12,000 unaccompanied children living on the streets. Nearly ten years later, NGOs estimate that these numbers are much higher. Most of these children have no adults to care for them, and they lack access to education, nutritious food and medical care. Boys and girls are both at risk for trafficking for forced labor, with girls at risk for sexual violence, sexual trafficking and child marriage.

At Enhance Worldwide, we mitigate the risks that threaten the security of some of the most vulnerable children in Addis Ababa through integrated programs and support services. We provide Conditional Cash Transfers to families to ensure that they can remain safe, secure and warm in their home, and we ensure that they have access to nutritious food through supplemental nutrition programs. We also make sure that the children have access to education, including school, summer programs, academic tutoring, mentoring, and life skills programs. While we focus on girls, we support families to uplift the entire community.

We closed out 2018 with our girls earning better grades and scoring higher on exams than ever before. Then in 2019 we accepted two new girls, Asnakgch and Zwede, into our Kinship Care program. These two girls, like all girls in our program, are vulnerable to homelessness and food insecurity, and their relatives cannot afford to send them to school without assistance. And like all girls, Asnakgch and Zwede have infinite promise and potential. Thanks to donors like you, these girls joined our cohort and will have the opportunity to learn and grow without the threat of homelessness. They will have nutritious food and academic support, and they will have a network of peers and adults in their community who care for them. We hope that one day Asnakgch and Zwede will take all of this support and grow up to be leaders, making their households, communities and country safer and more just for all women and girls.

We know there are a number of ways you could have spent your donation, so we are privileged that you invested in Enhance Worldwide's work.  You are now a part of our community and we are honored to have your support.  Please consider sharing our GlobalGiving project on social media or just bring us up in conversation.  Together, we stand up for girls!


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“I cannot do all the good that the world needs. But the world needs all the good that I can do.” 
Jana Stanfield

As we prepare to celebrate the holidays and 2018 nears its end, it’s common to reflect on the past year, thinking about ourselves and the impact we have had on others – especially others.  I am especially proud of my involvement with Enhance Worldwide and the life-changing opportunities it provides to girls in Ethiopia.

Enhance Worldwide was founded with the idea that all girls should be able to attend school.  While no organization can ensure that all girls will be educated, it can advance that goal one girl at a time.  Or two.

We now have graduates!  These young women represent our alumni, both from Enhance Worldwide and school.  They are the successes we all share and congratulate them as they look forward to bright, successful futures. 

And we continue to welcome new students, those who are just beginning their journeys to academic and personal success.  Each year, a few more girls are able to think about their own dreams and pursue them.

This year, through Global Giving, Enhance Worldwide continues to grow, with 101 donors contributing $14,799.00 since 2015.  One donor at a time, one girl at a time, we are able to make great impacts on the lives in Ethiopia.  Through tuition payments, family support, and summer computer camps, we provide the foundation that allows these girls to thrive. 

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Graduation ceremony for a program participant
Graduation ceremony for a program participant

This September marks the fifth school year of Enhance Worldwide programming in the Entoto area of Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.  Enhance Worldwide’s three core programs – Kinship Care, Rising Autonomy, and Pathways Project -- actively challenge the threats of child marriage, institutional care (orphanage), street violence, heightened risk for HIV/AIDS, and trafficking.  Globally, the most significant barriers to girls' educational enrollment and completion are disparate gender norms, school-related gender-based violence, pregnancy, child marriage, and poverty. Child marriage remains a human rights and education challenge in Ethiopia, where two in every five girls are married before their 18th birthday and nearly one in five girls marries before the age of 15 (Girls Not Brides, 2018).


Enhance Worldwide’s sustainable girls’ education and retention projects provide a continuum of care from elementary school through university or technical school, and continue supporting graduates through their employment search.  In this reporting period, the Kinship Care program supported more than 12 households, providing academic tutoring, counseling services designed to improve self-esteem and empowerment, financial literacy, and vital supplemental nutrition for program participants and their families. Enhance Worldwide’s integrated, strength-based programming facilitated a 22% increase in participants’ academic performance. 


Enhance’s programs empower participants to live lives of autonomy and dignity.  Tesehay is a 14 year old participant whose family faced food insecurity on a daily basis.  Tesehay spent much of her time supporting her family by collecting firewood and fetching water from a distant area, rather than focusing on her education. Enrolling in Enhance Worldwide programs provided Tesehay the opportunity to concentrate on her studies, knowing her family received Conditional Cash Transfers (CCTs) supporting their health and wellbeing. Tesehay has since passed the 9th grade, ranked first in her class, and dreams of becoming a doctor: “Now I dare to dream big.”


Thank you for providing a critical investment in girls’ education through your donations to Enhance Worldwide.  Thank you for ‘dreaming big,’ envisioning communities where girls and women have the skills to lead meaningful, dignified lives and where each individual has agency, autonomy, and aspirations.

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Dear Friends of Enhance Worldwide,

You truly have made an impact through our Educational Support for Girls in Ethiopia project:

  • 2 GlobalGiving Projects, 1 fully funded
  • 96 donors
  • $11,884 raised to date, through social media alone

Your support and action could not come at a more critical time.  UNESCO Dakar reports (May 2018) 52 million girls out of school have no access to education in sub Saharan Africa and the completion rate for girls' lower secondary education is only 31%.  

The most significant barriers to girls' educational enrollment and completion are disparate gender norms, school-related gender based violence, pregnancy, child marriage, and poverty.  Our Kinship Care program, Rising Autonomy program, and Pathways Project -- through your generous support -- challenge the way discrimination, poverty, and inequality uniquely impact girls and young women.

During the school year, our field team works with local partners to ensure access to education and healthy mentoring relationships, teaching essential life skills, investing in girlhood through play-focused workshops and activities, providing Conditional Cash Transfers (CCTs) to mitigate barriers to education and increase health and wellbeing, and fostering economic independence through financial literacy education.  Your support ensures our programs reach over 150 direct beneficiaries each school year.

The upcoming summer break from school significantly increases risks: life out of school remains a harrowing place for many girls and young women in Ethiopia.  In June 2015, our first summer program launched, stemming from an emergency request from participants and local partners.  The program has grown over the previous three summers, actively creating safe spaces for girls to be girls, not threatened by child marriage, trafficking, or street violence.

This summer program -- our fourth -- represents an exciting organizational milestone: our entire summer program will be funded exclusively by your GlobalGiving donations!  Thank you for responding so generously to this life-saving need.  Thank you for funding the critical academic and social support required to keep these girls on the educational continuum.  Thank you for standing up for girls.

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Organization Information

Enhance Worldwide

Location: Yellow Springs, OH - USA
Facebook: Facebook Page
Twitter: @EnhanceWW
Project Leader:
Ashley Lackovich-Van Gorp
Yellow Springs, OH United States

Funded Project!

Combined with other sources of funding, this project raised enough money to fund the outlined activities and is no longer accepting donations.

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