Project Description

Help for the shepherd people of the Afar / Ethiopia

On our missions with the Caravan of Humanity, we are primarily dealing with the consequences of global misery: war, violence, corruption, climate change, …

People who, for a variety of reasons, no longer see a future in their home country and therefore embark on an often life-threatening journey, have so far mostly been the recipients of our help. But it would actually be even more important to tackle the causes of this flight. However, the causes of flight cannot be combated by building higher fences, but only by improving the living conditions in the countries of origin of the refugees. Be it through peace negotiations, through improved working conditions, through decent wages, through education or through truly fair trade.

In Ethiopia, a brutal civil war raged in the Tigray region and beyond until November 2022. By the time we visited the region in February 2023, the terrible hustle and bustle was already a thing of the past. Nevertheless, the situation is still very tense and the two-year war has only exacerbated the already serious problems of the population. Increasingly long periods of drought, corrupt politicians, power-hungry and money-hungry international investors and lobbyists continue to wreak havoc in this beautiful country.

We have therefore decided to support a small, local organization called APDA. APDA stands for “Afar Pastoralist Development Association”, i.e. an association to support the pastoralist and nomadic Afar people. The organization operates at various levels: Health care, education, water supply and nutrition, agricultural development, literacy, …

APDA is an organization by the Afar for the Afar and yet the founder and our contact person is a native Australian named Valerie Browning. She is, however, after more than 30 years in the Ethiopian bush and married to an Afar, rather Afar than Australian. Valerie’s Afar name is Maalika and under this name she is known throughout the Afar region to beyond the borders of Eritrea and Djibouti. One of APDA’s first major projects is the maternity clinic in Mile: The maternal mortality rate in this region was once one of the highest in the world. Maalika, a trained nurse, could not let this problem go to waste and set up this maternity clinic in 2011. This birth clinic alone has significantly reduced infant and maternal mortality in the region. In addition, APDA has trained several thousand obstetricians over the years to attend emergencies in remote villages.

You can find more information about our mission in Ethiopia on the website of our Karawanis Bruno Maul.

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In Ethiopia, we were able to experience first-hand how ethnic conflicts, corruption, interference by foreign corporations and global warming cause people hardship and distress and ultimately force them to flee.”