For Immediate Release
Life in Abundance Wins Top Recognition for OVC in Ethiopia
On January 15, 2015, Dr. Florence Muindi announced that Life In Abundance International (LIA) was awarded Ethiopia’s 2014 first prize for the empowerment of orphans and vulnerable children.
The Arada Street Children Project was established in March 2012; designed to improve the living conditions of 150 at-risk children and their caretakers, as well as 50 “hard core” or homeless street children. Through an integrated, community-based, preventive and rehabilitative program, an environment that supported physical, social, emotional and spiritual development was created.
As an organic result of the program “Zoe” Saving and Credit Association was established by caretakers of at-risk children to develop healthy savings habits and improve access to banking services. Families took positive steps towards self-reliance and economic empowerment.
The target community was frequently engaged through intensive childcare and family life seminars as well as through home visit micro-enterprise trainings. From this foundation, associations similar to the Zoe Saving and Credit Association were established in June 2013 with their own locally defined directives and guidelines.
Through continued education on savings and business practices, and hard work, many members of the Zoe Association were able to raise 20 birr (~1 USD) in monthly contributions, which is a significant sum in this context. The association began increasing their giving as a result of income generating activities funded by the revolving pool and collected a total of 142,367 birr (7,118.35 USD). Across the various capitals of associations, 357,367 birr (17,868.35 USD) has been accumulated and used to stimulate home and community income generating activities.
The Addis Credit and Saving Institution similarly engaged hard-core street children. Hard core children are trained to develop healthy savings habits and income generating skill sets. To date the association has supported the establishment of bakeries, leather workshops, automobile maintenance centers, and other small businesses started by street children. A social worker facilitates the mentoring of these young people whose lives are being radically transformed. The results from this particular association caught the eye of the government of Ethiopia.
Among other, much larger and well-known non-profits and NGOs LIA Ethiopia was recognized as the top organization for empowerment of orphans and vulnerable children, and for outstanding achievement in the NGO sector in Addis Ababa.
Said, Dr. Muindi, “We are so grateful for this recognition. Ethiopia is where God gave birth to Life in Abundance. While we work for His approval and glory, this award is a testimony to His goodness and favor.”
LIA has been addressing the diverse causes of poverty in most difficult places in Africa and beyond since 1993. Over the past two of decades LIA has expanded to serve nine countries.
LIA is currently implementing more than 36 community development programs serving more than 150,000 people in partnership with community churches. By mobilizing the local church to restore hope, renew hope and inspire lasting transformation for their communities, LIA is assisting locals to identify and address their own needs with local resources.