SOME PRACTICAL PROJECTS IN ETHIOPIAN PRISONS
JFA-PFE projects in which we are involved include PRACTICAL ones such as
P/1 The installation of water and sanitation,
P/2 Health and Welfare provision,
P/3 Construction of dormitory accommodation for women and children
P/4 Twinkle of Hope caring for children in prison with their mothers,
P/5 REFUGE caring for children in the community who have parents in prison,
P/6 Adult Education and Vocational Skills Training.
P/1 Water & Sanitation
As funds become available efforts are being made to provide water and also better - though still basic - sanitation arrangements. The water may be piped in, or pumped up according to the local situation.
In some prisons, the new latrines now include sewage treatment with biogas digesters that provide gas for cooking instead of having to fell trees. The treated waste provides manure and makes it possible to grow vegetables.
P/2 Health and Welfare
This is a very real need. The prisons are crowded, people with contageous diseases often being housed with others. There is a general shortage of health workers and also of medicines.
Intervention is at many levels, from providing blankets through to arranging visits by medical volunteers. There are funding dependent projects planned for mobile clinics to try to address serious health issues such as HIV/AIDS, TB and other communicable diseases.
P/3 Dormitory Projects
Having regard to the poverty related conditions in many prisons and in particular the special needs of women, we support the construction of new accommodation for women and the children being cared for in prison by their prisoner mothers. This is largely made possible through project specific donations and in recent years dormitories have been completed in a number of prisons including Asebe Teferi, Dessie, Fiche, Dilla, Nekempte and Jijiga. During 2015-16 (Ethiopian year 2008) it is planned to build new accommodation in Addis Alem Prison which is about 20 miles west of the capital Addis Ababa. More>>>
P/4 Twinkle of Hope
Twinkle of Hope - caring for children in prison with their prisoner mother was established in 2002 to provide such things as a balanced diet, clothing, healthcare and education appropriate to their age. It is a life transforming initiative and in the prisons where it operates, the support is not child specific but is available for all of the children. Only a small proportion of the 600 children in this category currently enjoy the benefits of this project. One off donations or regular monthly contributions will help to extend it. More>>
REFUGE – reflecting the changes taking place where more of the children of school age are no longer in prison with their mothers this project was piloted in 2010. It aims, through individual sponsorship at £20.00 per child per month, to provide foster care for children living in the community and whose parents are in prison. More>>
P/6 Adult Education and Vocational Training
The keenness of staff and prisoners for education was very clearly illustrated early on. In one prison visited - although they had no money - they managed to construct a shelter from branches and hold classes out of the sun.
Educational and training programmes include tailoring, woodwork and metalwork, weaving and also agriculture. These help to equip prisoners for release and may also provide gainful occupation even whilst still in prison.