Carrying heavy loads over sometimes long distances can be very trying for women and especially for girls. This work harms their health and prevents girls from attending school, sometimes partly, sometimes totally.
In Ethiopia, as in many poor countries around the world, a lot of transports of water, firewood, grains and everything else that needs to be transported are still largely carried out on the backs of women and their daughters. Often, these heavy loads over long distances have a negative impact on women’s health and make them age prematurely. This laborious and time-consuming work is often passed on from mothers to their daughters, a tradition that is passed on from generations to generations. Such girls waste a lot of time and are then unable to attend school.
In our reforestation areas, we very often meet such women and girls. Precisely during reforestation, we observe women carrying plants up to the reforestation areas on their backs or heads. In order to relieve such women of the transport, we give them donkeys. They are usually the so-called “women household”, that is, women who are solely responsible for the household. Before they get a donkey, they are instructed on how to look after it and they must be able to feed the donkeys sufficiently. We generally give a female donkey, so that the women can have donkey foals and use or sell them. It is a humanitarian and beneficial project.
The donkey projects play an important role in our foundation and show how reforestation directly helps people and the environment as well as concretely improving the life of women and girls:
Trees – Forests – Water – Food – Life