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AAH Ethiopia now registered


We are very pleased to share that AAH Ethiopia has now been registered and licensed by the Charities and Societies Agency of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia. The license will be renewed every three years.  


As a follow-up to the registration, a high-level delegation consisting of the Action Africa Help International (AAH-I) Patron Abou Moussa, International Board Chairman Dr. John Tabayi and the Executive Director Dr. Caroline Kisia visited Ethiopia from 5th to 10th November 2017. They were hosted by AAH Ethiopia Country Director Ato Ayalew Aweke.


AAH Ethiopia registration

L to R: Dr. John Tabayi, Dr. Caroline Kisia and Ato Ayalew Aweke after receiving the registration certificate


The objectives of the visit were to:

  1. Familiarize the team to meet the nascent AAH Ethiopia team and visit the office in order to deliberate on how best to support the startup process, and on possible areas of focus of AAH-I operations in Ethiopia.
  2. Meet with selected Government officials to thank them for AAH-I Ethiopia registration and garner their further support.
  3. Meet with potential donor and partner organizations to introduce AAH-I and explore potential opportunities for collaboration.
  4. Raise the profile of AAH-I in Ethiopia and Africa-wide and enhance our visibility.
  5. Have an opportunity for bonding among the team members.


The team met with and engaged multiple stakeholders from the Administration for Refugee & Returnee Affairs (ARRA), United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), International Organization for Migration (IOM), World Food Programme (WFP), Bureau of Population, Refugees, and Migration (BPRM), European Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid Operations (ECHO), Embassy of the Netherlands, Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) and the African Union.


AAH-I intendeds to start work in Gambella, where 370,000 refugees (most of them South Sudanese) are currently hosted with new arrivals continuing to be received. This was an emergency situation, and there was cooperation that would facilitate working there. AAH-I had chosen 5 areas of focus - nutrition, Water, Sanitation and Hygiene, Sexual and Gender Based Violence, shelter and infrastructure. 


Ministers & World Bank Country Manager visit AAH South Sudan Public Works Project


A delegation of high level ministers of the Republic of South Sudan visited the Safety Net project in Juba implemented by Action Africa Help International (AAH-I) on 23 November 2017. The Safety Net initiative is under the Public Works project, implemented by AAH-I on behalf of the Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security.


The project objective is to provide access to income opportunities and temporary employment to the poor and the vulnerable, and put in place building blocks for a social protection system. From July 2017 the project has paid US $840, 360 to at least 6,000 households who participate in public works activities.


The Ministers were accompanied by the World Bank South Sudan Country Manager Sahr Kpundeh and other Government dignitaries. The ministerial team comprised of:


  1. Minister of Finance and Economic Planning, Hon. Stephen Dieu
  2. Minister of Gender, Child and Social Welfare, Hon. Awut Deng
  3. Deputy Minister of Labour, Public Service and Human Resource Development, Hon. David Yau Yau
  4. Minister of Agriculture and Food Security, Hon. Onyitii Adigo
  5. Deputy Minister of Agriculture and Food Security, Hon Cornelius Kon Ngu
  6. Under Secretaries from the Ministry of Agriculture, Dr. John O. Kanision and Prof. Mathew Udo
  7. Under Secretary of the Ministry of Labour, Mary Hilary Wani
  8. Director of Aid Coordination Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning, Moses Mabior Deu
  9. Deputy Mayor of Juba City, Semir Khamis


Minsiters visit AAH SS project

Ministers (L to R) for Agriculture and Food Security, Finance and Economic Planning, Gender, Child & Social Welfare, Labour, Public Service & Human Resource Development and a Deputy Minister Agriculture and Food Security.



Some of the speech highlights from the main speakers are as follows:


You (people of Lologo) no longer need Hiwar al watani, (national dialogue), the joy, togetherness and love I have seen today has demonstrated that engaging people in a programme like this, (Safety Net) brings peace and unity in the country... I would like to thank the World Bank and AAH-I for the good implementation of the project... I will commend your good work on the project to the Presidency - Minister for Finance and Economic Planning Hon. Stephen Dieu


"...We have seen how important the project is to you. So now we are looking forward to its continuation and expansion...’’ - Minister for Agriculture and Food Security Hon Onyitii Adigo


"...Washington always asks me about the results from World Bank investments in South Sudan. Clearly the Safety Net project is one of the success stories... Today I have seen how the investments we are making are helping people. We are planning to scale up this programme so that more people can be supported...’’ World Bank Country Manager Sahr Kpundeh



"...Good work starts small but grows bigger with time, so let’s join hands in this project. I'm so happy that this project has created unity among the people..." Minister of Gender, Child and Social Welfare- Hon Awut Deng


"...It is amazing to see so many women being engaged in this project. Let’s not stop at this, we should venture into agriculture in order to increase the productivity of agro-products to supplement what we already have..." Deputy Minister of Labour, Public Service and Human Resource Development Hon. David Yau Yau 



The Ministers and the World Bank Representative commended the achievements of the Safety Net project for how it is improving the livelihoods of beneficiaries through cash transfers. They visited five Quarter Councils (Nyokuron West, Nyokuron South, Gbongoroki, Mijiki and Lologo). In each Quarter Council they were welcomed by thousands of jubilant beneficiaries who entertained them with a range of traditional dances. 


 AAH South Sudan Beneficiaries receive guests

Beneficiaries receive the guests with song and dance


The beneficiaries explained to the delegation the many benefits they have received from the project. Speaker after speaker stated that the cash they receive from the project has helped them to support their households - to buy food, pay school fees and cover medical expenses. They further pointed out that, the project has created social cohesion among residents of Quarter Councils and eased transportation to deliver water and other services from the main component of road rehabilitation.


Beneficiary holding placard

Beneficiary holding 'thank you' placard


AAH-I was represented by the Chairman of South Sudan Board Hon. Leonard Logo Mulukwat, Country Director Stephen Lukudu, Head of Programmes Richard Ofwono, Finance and Administration Director Dinah Njoroge, Public Works Project Manager Miiro Mivule and other project staff.

Brock University SDG youth training event


Action Africa Help International (AAH-I) was invited to showcase their work at the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) Youth Training event at Brock University, Canada, on 11th November, 2017. The aim of the event was to educate youth about the 17 SDGs and to empower them to identify innovative ways of implementing the goals to promote a sustainable global future. 


Dr. Irene Podolak, a Senior Research Associate with AAH-I, and an Adjunct Professor at Brock, spoke on behalf of AAHI. There were over 200 students at the event, along with two global speakers representing the United Nations. 


Christian Courtis, a Human Rights Officer with the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, was the keynote speaker. Also in attendance was Steve Lee, a climate change activist and policy advocate to the United Nations was the key facilitator for the daylong event. Steve is the Executive Director of the Foundation for Environmental Stewardship, and a member of numerous groups and agencies such as: World We Want 2030 Policy Strategy Group, UN Major Group Children and Youth, UNEP Tunza, UN Inter-Agency Network on Youth Development, and Youth Commission on the Status of Women Taskforce.


UN Christian Courtis at AAH-I Brock Uni event

Christian Courtis making his presentation



Steve Lee UN at AAH-I SDG Brock Uni

Steve Lee during the event


Irene’s presentation emphasized Action Africa’s contribution towards implementing many of the SDGs, for example: reducing poverty, good health and wellbeing, quality education, clean water, sustainable communities, economic growth, and gender equity. She also spoke about how AAH Kenya, with a number of global partners, is starting a new project in the Mara in Narok County to inspire and empower adolescent girls to improve their sexual reproductive health and rights, and also improve their livelihoods. 


irene Podolak at AAH-I Brock Uni event

Irene highlighting the work of AAH-I


Students were invited to visit the AAH-I exhibit table, which included a poster board of the linkages between Action Africa’s strategic goals and the SDGs, plus various AAH-I documents. Many students came to the exhibit and expressed how impressed they were with the impact that has been achieved in AAH-I’s Country Programmes. Two graduate students were heard to say “Are they amazing or what – I hope someday I can work for an organization like this and really make a difference.”


AAH-I is a regional African-led non-governmental organization that supports livelihood-challenged communities in East and Southern Africa to sustainably improve their well being and standard of living. With Country Programmes in South Sudan, Kenya, Somalia, Uganda, Zambia, Djibouti and  Ethiopia, AAH-I has over 25 years’ experience working with communities in conflict and post-conflict situations, including refugees, internally displaced people and host communities.



Students at the AAH-I Brock Uni event

Students and guests attending at the training event



Students visiting the AAH-I table

Students learning more about AAH-I

Youth in Adjumani host EU and Belgian Technical Cooperation representatives


The European Union (EU) Emergency Trust Fund Program Advisor Petr Pribyla and Belgian Technical Cooperation Centre Skills Development Project Director Gregory Acar visited the Adjumani Vocational Centre, a project of Action Africa Help Uganda (AAH-U) on 7th and 8th November 2017. They were hosted by AAH-U Vocational Training Coordinator Charles Okot.


 EU and BTC visit AAH Uganda Adjumani workshop

Petr (third right), Gregory (Second left), Charles (second right) and other guests at the Adjumani training centre


Petr and Gregory toured the motor vehicle, welding and metal fabrication, motorcycle, and electrical and plumbing sections of the training facility, which also host the current ongoing courses for 50 youths (41 male and 9 female). Of these 35 are refugees and 15 are Ugandan nationals. 


“AAH-U has been running the vocational training programme in the mechanical workshop in Adjumani district since 2015. As at November 2017, 83 youths have successfully graduated from the vocational training center. The objective of the programme is to address the employment gap in Uganda,” said Charles Okot. Youth unemployment is a growing problem in the country, with the majority of its population below 18 years. Providing youth with the right skills and matching them to jobs should contribute to their social and economic integration. However, the Business, Technical and Vocational Education and Training (BTVET) sector in Uganda is underfinanced, which negatively impacts the design and delivery of vocational courses. The Skilling Uganda strategic plan (2012-2021) aims to transform BTVET in order to increase the employability of youth through better quality of instruction and learning in skills development, and by making it more responsive to labour market needs. 


Gregory Acar said, “the Belgian Technical Cooperation, through funding from the EU, is supporting the Uganda Ministry of Education and Sports in implementing this strategic plan through the Support to Skilling Uganda programme. We are providing technical support to the reform process and encouraging the involvement of the private sector in BTVET.” Petr and Gregory wanted to tour a centre already successfully delivering vocational skills in Uganda, and the AAH-U Adjumani training centre squarely fit the bill.



 EU and BTC visit AAH Uganda Adjumani workshop

Trainees at the welding and metal fabrication section



The Adjumani training centre is complementing the Support to Skilling Uganda programme by delivering quality market relevant skills to youth so that they aren’t only employable, but also resilient enough to cope with the ever-changing workplace demands and set up their own businesses. During the visit, the graduates were excited to demonstrate their different skills while explaining the different procedures for making, repairing, assembling and dismantling different components. They also showcased various products they were working on.


 EU and BTC visit AAH Uganda Adjumani workshop

Gladish (left), a plumbing trainee, explaining her work during the visit


Photos by Josephine Omunyidde, Communications Officer - European Union Emergency Trust Fund

World Bank Rep visits Juba Public Works project


World Bank Social Protection Specialist Nadia Selim visited the Action Africa Help International (AAH-I) public works project in Juba, South Sudan, from 23rd to 27th October 2017. She visited 4 quarter councils.



“We are very impressed and happy with the project implementation. The project is meeting the set objectives and achieving impact beyond our expectation, with just two and half months before the contract expiry date,” said Nadia.



World Bank in AAH South Sudan

Nadia with beneficiaries at Gbongoroki Quarter Council


AAH-I has been implementing Juba Public Works, a project of the Government of South Sudan, under the Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security. The project is funded by the World Bank. The project objective is to provide access to income opportunities and temporary employment to the poor and vulnerable, and put in place building blocks for a social protection system. This is in line with AAH-I’s strategic objective of developing, promoting and implementing innovative entrepreneurial and sustainable livelihood programme. By the time of the visit, the project had transferred cash amounting to US$ 507,552 since August 2017 to 6,000 beneficiaries (72% female) who are engaged in cash for work activities.



World Bank in AAH South Sudan


Nadia using the tippy tap to wash her hands at the children’s shelter at Nyokuron South


During her interaction with the beneficiaries and her visit to two beneficiaries’ homes, Nadia received numerous testimonies from the beneficiaries on how the project has rescued them from extreme vulnerability to a level that they are now able to take care of themselves and their families.


During Nadia’s visit, project beneficiaries requested for extension of the project to geographically cover more quarter councils and extend the project duration because of the increasing numbers of vulnerable households in Juba.

Inspiring story ahead of the World Refugee day.