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Kebron Orphanage was established in 2005 in the village of Modjo, about one hour drive south of Addis Ababa in the Oromia Region. The orphanage exists to provide daily necessities for children orphaned by the effects of disease, war, famine, and drought. This is done by providing a safe and structured environment for the children with compassion and care.
Yewbi Wondimu, founder of Kebron, converted her childhood home into what is now the orphanage in response to the dire situation in her village. Yewbi is a registered nurse who lives in Southern California and works for a highly respected HMO. She travels to Kebron once every year. She has been financially supporting the orphanage through her personal salary and the donations of friends in her nursing unit.
Kebron serves over 50 children. There are currently 12 children at Kebron and 4 full-time staff members that live at the orphanage alongside the children. The kids attend a local school and have Bible and English lessons on a daily basis. Kebron also assists other children who live within the community and who attend government schools.
Ethiopia is an eastern African country approximately twice the size as Texas. Ethiopia is located in the ‘Horn of Africa’ and has a population estimated at 75 million people. Ethiopia has a very diverse population, as there are more than 77 different ethnic groups, with the Oromo, Amhara and Tigreans making up the majority. One third of Ethiopia’s population survives on less than one US dollar per day. (Unicef)
The people of Ethiopia face significant challenges in their day-to-day life as they work toward success, some of these challenges include malnutrition, HIV/AIDS, lack of access to clean water, lack of education, and preventable disease. Sadly, orphaned and vulnerable children and women are most likely to be affected by these devastating circumstances. Ethiopia has the largest HIV/AIDS infected population in the world (Unicef). Statistics reveal that one out of every six children in Ethiopia die before reaching their fifth birthday (Unicef).
Despite these staggering statistics, the people of Ethiopia are resilient and working towards significant progress. Addis Ababa, Ethiopia’s capital, is home to the headquarters for the African Union and is often referred to as the ‘political capital of Africa.’
Ethiopia operates on the Coptic calendar – which is approximately eight years behind the more frequently used Gregorian calendar. Although Ethiopians practice several religions, approximately 63% identify as Christian (statistic includes Ethiopian Orthodox) and 33% identify as Muslim.