Kolole: A Year in the Life
August 06, 2019
Kolole was one of the four families we followed in 2018. Throughout the year, we gathered updates on her and her family. Take a look into a year in the life of Kolole!
As the hardworking supporter of her family, Kolole grew up providing for her family through casual labor work. She met her husband and they moved to Addis Ababa. Kolole’s husband was a carpenter but fell from a building while he was on a job and badly injured his back. Because of the severe injury, he stopped working. Since he was the sole provider of the home, there was no income to feed the family. Both children were forced to drop out of school. Desperate, Kolole was referred to Ethiopia ACT by government officials. Upon acceptance into the program, they received food, support and education for their children. As a new beneficiary of Ethiopia ACT, Kolole and her husband are hopeful in the new beginnings for their family, restoration, and desire to be self-supporting once again.
Kolole’s children are so excited to start school in September since their re-enrollment. Both of her children will receive their new uniforms and shoes in August through the financial assistance of Ethiopia ACT.
Recently, Kolole has been worried about her job of washing clothing as work has become slower. Her husband still cannot work because of his injured back. Kolole and her family rely heavily on the support received from Ethiopia ACT. On the other hand, Kolole is so thrilled that she no longer has to worry about food and her children’s education. These developments have incited a spark of hope in her life.
Since her job of washing clothes has become less available, she requested grant money to start a small business of selling “Injera” (a traditional Ethiopian sourdough flatbread). Kolole is an energetic women that given the chance, she will start a new business being able to support her whole family. If her grant is approved, she will go through economic training which will teach her best practices on starting and running a successful business which will provide her the opportunity to be completely self-sufficient!
Kolole and her family are doing well these days! She still regularly visits the Project’s Community Center to receive her monthly support. To aid with the hardships she faces in life, Kolole recently started attending the Project’s support group where she shares her story with other beneficiaries in the Project. She has been inspired as she learns of other beneficiaries’ stories and how they have overcome the difficulties in their lives with the help of Ethiopia ACT’s support.
Lately, Kolole has started retrieving water for people in her neighborhood to earn money as her previous job of washing clothes was not in high demand. During the recent holiday season, she also started baking bread to sell. Doing these jobs in addition to her monthly support from Ethiopia ACT provides the income she needs to support her household.
Last week both of her children collected all their school supplies they needed for the new academic year which just started!
Kolole reports she and her family are the happiest they have been in a long time! Both of her children are currently enrolled in school and doing well. Being a hardworking woman, Kolole has recently started a business with the little money she has been able to save over time. She is now selling vegetables and earns a better living than ever before.
In Ethiopia ACT’s beneficiary assessment last month, Kolole emerged to be one of the exemplary beneficiaries as she has worked incredibly hard to be self-supporting. With this in mind, the project staff has decided to renovate her house. Additionally, since she started a small business on her own, the Ethiopia ACT’s Income Generating Activities (IGA) program has decided to build a one-room house for Kolole on her compound so she can rent it and create additional income to support her family.
Since Kolole has been doing so well and has become self-sustaining, the project staff has decided to graduate Kolole from the support program at the end of December. When told this news, Kolole was very thankful and in her words said that she has “started a new chapter in my life. Once I was broken, unable to feed my children, they dropped out of school. Now I am a hopeful woman with a bright future.” Kolole is able to feed her children and earn an income to support her entire family.
This is the ultimate goal when a family is accepted into Ethiopia ACT’s program, and we are so thankful to see Kolole and her family happy and healthy!