Heading North Ethiopia

UPDATE: Covid-19 response, April 2020

In the Tere area, all transportation and marketing has been banned by the government in response to Coronavirus. There is no labour work for the people. This is of particular concern as the villagers “work for today to eat for today”. The government has not forwarded any relief support for those who are no longer able to feed their family.

Our partners at Heading North report that the price of commodities have nearly doubled already, and fear for the price increases over the coming months. Those who are struggling to pay landlords this month are considering future months with dread.

Heading North are responding by distributing soap and sanitation to the community, which has already been supported to access clean water through Anglican Aid. They are also helping villagers to buy grain to feed their households amidst the COVID-19 lockdown.


About Heading North

Heading North has a participatory community-led development approach. The project, a partnership between Anglican Aid and the Ethiopian Kale Heywet Church, works with the community to identify what the people themselves perceive the community being most in need of. Heading North facilitates training processes which mobilise the community towards the identified solutions.

Ethiopia is one of the world’s poorest countries and a majority of people live in rural subsistence farming communities. The country has suffered drought and widespread food insecurity. The district where Heading North is based is known for its violence and its #1 cause of mortality is vengeance killing.

Project solutions have included:

  • Peace and reconciliation training // Community-wide training conferences, and appointment of trained mediators to decrease rates of revenge killing. 
  • Leadership training // To develop leadership skills in both the church and community, which will continue to positively impact communities far beyond the initial project.
  • Agricultural training // To produce a greater yield of nutritious crops in order to improve food security.
  • Environment conservation initiatives // The introduction of organic farming techniques from the ‘Farming God’s Way’ model has reversed erosion and drainage of nutrients from the soil.
  • Water infrastructure // Previously villagers - usually women and girls - would need to take an unsafe 2-hour round trip to collect water from a contaminated watering hole. Many villagers suffered from the high prevalence of waterborne diseases. Now some villages are sharing their water points accessed through boreholes with neighbouring villages that don’t have access to clean water.
  • School infrastructure and student support // Construction of school toilets to increase girls’ attendance, and four additional classrooms so kids can attend school locally. Previously they had to travel to Tere to be schooled, although students couldn’t travel in the rainy season when the river was flooded and girls would not be sent because of vulnerability.
  • Humanitarian relief // Supporting people unable to earn an income during the COVID-19 lockdowns with emergency rations, soap, and sanitiser.


The big impacts of Heading North’s work

The positive outcomes of this community development training have been abundant! 

Vengeance killing has dropped from 20 people in a year to just one in the past twelve months and the government is requesting the expansion of this peace and reconciliation training. 84% of the district now has access to clean water (compared to 23% in 2014) and the prevalence of waterborne diseases has dropped by 95%. Girls’ school attendance is now equal to that of boys and overall school results have increased by 20%. Farmers have a steady income from being trained in improved agricultural techniques, with one farmer saying now that he is using the new techniques, he receives 10 times his previous income, can look after his family, and be generous. 

The community is actively involved in their own development and is now able to identify and solve their own problems. After many years of intense persecution, the project has also brought about increased acceptance for the church, as people witness how believers love and serve their community.

Your generosity will mean Heading North can continue this important work of equipping the community to overcome issues of poverty.

All donations are tax deductible.

ABN 28 525 237 517


      When revenge killings drop by 95% ...

      Heading North has seen dramatic changes in local culture, practices and relationships since first partnering with Anglican Aid in 2015.

      A ministry of the Kale Haywet Church in Ethiopia, Heading North facilitates community-led development and social change in Ethiopia through various training initiatives and the provision of water and education infrastructure. And they are saving lives as a result.

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