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Mary’s Meals is reaching more than 45,000 children in Ethiopia.

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Where we work

Life in Ethiopia

Ethiopia is currently ranked 175 out of 191 countries and territories in the Human Development Index (HDI), one of the poorest and most drought-prone countries in the world, with more than a quarter of its population living below the International Poverty Line ($2.15 per day).

Many children and their families face a daily struggle for survival, particularly in rural areas where most Ethiopians live. Recurring periods of severe drought and unpredictable rainfall make it almost impossible for people to grow enough food, causing widespread poverty and hungerIn Ethiopia, 36.8% of children under five have stunted growth.

An ongoing civil conflict in Tigray is devastating the people of the region and destroying infrastructure, leading to food and fuel shortages. More than 150,000 destitute and traumatized people – including children who have lost their parents – have sought refuge in the region’s capital, Mekelle.

Even before the current conflict, school drop-out rates were high with more than 60% of children failing to complete their primary education. Girls are particularly disadvantaged and around two thirds of the primary school-age children who are missing out on school are female.

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Mary's Meals in Ethiopia

Mary’s Meals has been serving school meals in Ethiopia since 2017.

We work with a trusted local partner to provide meals to marginalized and disadvantaged children in the impoverished Tigray region in the north-east of the country, close to the Eritrean border.

The Tigray region has been torn apart by major conflict since November 2020, leaving close to two million people displaced from their homes, and making it more challenging for us to reach the hungry children we normally serve. Following more than three years of disruption to their education, children beginning to return to the classroom. But with the situation as it is, they desperately need school meals to be able to stay in school. We have reinstated and extended our school feeding programme to reach more children in the region. We are currently providing more than 45,000 children with much-needed meals every school day.

When did we start working in Ethiopia?

Mary’s Meals has been serving meals in Ethiopia since 2017

How many children do we feed in Ethiopia?

We are currently reaching more than 45,000 children in the Tigray region of Ethiopia with daily meals in school.

What meal do we provide?

Kinche (cracked wheat) and chickpeas, or maize and beans as part of the school feeding program

Where are we based/where do we operate?

Tigray region, in the north-east of Ethiopia

What is the capital of Ethiopia?

The capital city of Ethiopia is Addis Ababa

What language(s) are spoken in Ethiopia?

Ethiopia has five official languages: Afar, Amharic, Oromo, Somali and Tigrinya

What currency is used in Ethiopia?

Ethiopian birr (ETB)

What is the population of Ethiopia?

The population of Ethiopia is 120,327,543