Welcome back to the Fueling the Future series! We are thrilled to bring you another blog that reflects the significance of investing in today’s youth and empowering the leaders of tomorrow. Today, we are going to talk about the power of education. We have a few extraordinary stories to share featuring Rediet, a young woman from Aware CarePoint and Yabets, a young man from Burayu CarePoint.
The Importance of Education
Before we dive into Rediet and Yabet’s stories, let’s talk about why education is one of Children’s HopeChest’s 12 Areas of Transformation in our approach to breaking cycles of poverty.
For many teens and young adults at our CarePoints, education is a pathway out of poverty and a gateway to a brighter future. At many HopeChest CarePoints, we partner with communities in which many of the families are not able to send their children to school. In some cases, they cannot afford it; in other cases, the parents need the children to work with them to earn sufficient money to survive; or in other situations, the parents are no longer living. For some families, the “heads of households” are the oldest surviving child – who may be only 10 or 12 years old. In many of those cases, they have no option but to drop out of school and work in order to care for several younger siblings; to be sure that they can continue with their education.
A primary focus of HopeChest’s work is to not only help children and teens survive, but we also want to give them the tools to be able to live and sustain themselves. We want them to break poverty cycles and to thrive in life. To achieve this goal, we often partially supplement what the family can contribute so that the child is actively attending school, and in some critical cases we cover all the required school fees and assessments for a child to be enrolled in school.
How this Creates Sustainability
Education is more than just attending a school and going to classes. It is about learning how to live life. Education empowers people to learn and do things in life that would otherwise remain a mystery. It is important that children do not just attend a CarePoint for many years and when they ‘age-out’ of sponsorship, years later, have no idea what to do. Optimally, they will have received an education or vocational training that equips them to sustain themselves and, potentially, raise and care for a family.
Introducing Rediet, a courageous and determined young girl whose life took a positive turn when she became part of HopeChest’s Awaré CarePoint program. As a single orphan facing tough times alongside her unemployed sister after her mother’s passing, she confronted immense hurdles in making ends meet. Through the support of Awaré CarePoint, Rediet discovered glimmers of hope that illuminated her path to a more promising future.
Through the CarePoint’s support, Rediet was able to grow in every aspect of her life. Nourished by nutritious meals, equipped with school materials, and guided by spiritual mentors, she not only survived but began to truly excel.
Every year, her dedication and hard work earned her well-deserved recognition for her outstanding academic achievements!
But amidst the challenges brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic, Rediet, and other Ethiopian students, faced a critical juncture – the national exam that would determine their future. As the results came in, the nation witnessed a disheartening figure, with only 3% of all 12th graders passing. Yet, amid this adversity, Rediet’s optimism and determination shone through, and she emerged as one of the triumphant 3%. Her remarkable achievement stands as a testament to the boundless potential within each child, given the right support and encouragement.
Rediet’s success story would not have been possible without the outside support from her mentors and supporters at the CarePoint. With a holistic approach, the CarePoint provided not only academic assistance but also practical support, including dormitory materials and transportation, easing the financial burden that can hinder the pursuit of education!
Meet Yabets, a remarkable 19-year-old from Ethiopia whose journey is a shining example of HopeChest’s holistic care at Burayu CarePoint.
Yabets’ journey with the CarePoint began when he was a young boy. The support he received there went beyond just providing food and education—it touched every aspect of his life. The CarePoint became a place where Yabets not only learned and grew academically but also developed essential life skills that would shape his future.
One of the areas where Yabets experienced tremendous growth was in his communication skills. Through interactions with mentors, peers, and participating in various activities, he learned how to express himself clearly and confidently. This skill would prove to be invaluable as he navigated his educational journey and personal relationships.
Yabets also honed his social skills at the CarePoint. Interacting with fellow students and mentors helped him become more empathetic, understanding, and cooperative. These qualities not only enriched his friendships but also laid the foundation for his future leadership roles. As Yabets continued to thrive, he discovered his leadership potential. With the support of the CarePoint, he took on responsibilities that allowed him to give back to the community that had supported him. He began volunteering at the CarePoint, mentoring younger children, and helping them navigate their own journeys of growth.
One of the most remarkable aspects of Yabets’ story is his educational journey. Despite facing challenges, he remained dedicated to his studies. With the guidance of the CarePoint’s educational programs and his own determination, Yabets achieved a significant milestone—he passed his college entrance exams! This achievement not only opened doors for his future but also inspired his peers to reach for their own dreams. Yabets’ passion for learning extended beyond his formal education. He embarked on a journey to learn video and photo editing through YouTube tutorials, showcasing his drive to expand his skills and interests independently.
Just two months ago, Yabets completed the Ethiopian university entrance examination with flying colors. His dedication and hard work paid off, highlighting the transformative power of holistic care.
Despite his busy schedule, Yabets remains committed to giving back. He dedicates his time to instructing children aged 8 to 12 in the craft and arts program at the CarePoint. Twice a week, for two days, he voluntarily participates in CarePoint activities, sharing his knowledge, skills, and experiences to inspire the next generation. Yabets’ story is a testament to the incredible impact of HopeChest’s holistic care approach.
Through the CarePoint, he blossomed academically, socially, spiritually, and personally. His journey from a young boy with dreams to a confident and capable young adult is an inspiration to all, demonstrating that with the right support and opportunities, every child can overcome challenges and reach their full potential.
Watch Yabets share his story in the video below.