Life changes through four generations of Ethiopian women – Oxfam

Oxfam PhotoEvery morning, nine-year-old Lelisie Kassam walks to the school on the edge of her village, where she studies with her classmates and dreams of becoming a doctor. Such an experience was unthinkable for the previous generations of Lelisie’s family, who all grew up in the same small village of Tedeccha – but never saw a school and never met a doctor, let alone thought of being one.

Life was very different for her great-grandmother. Emaldu Negewa was left an orphan during the Italian invasion of 1936. She spent her childhood looking after the cattle on her adopted family’s farm, before at the age of 12 she was married to a local farmer twice her age.

Emaldu was 15 years old when she had her first child. “I had 19 children in total – but only seven of them are still alive. Most died of diseases because there were no health facilities for people like us.”

“I didn’t go to school. It is something I am still sad about, but when I was young education was only for families with lots of money. The school was far away. Without school, my generation lived in the dark.”

For generations, most girls in the village have spent their days working in the fields. Lelisie’s grandmother, 50-year-old Lekea Borena, used to dig weeds and feed her parents’ cows. “Learning was only for the rich,” she says.

Read Full Story– Oxfamblog



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