Interviews with Ethiopian Girls

21 Oct

Over one week I interviewed 17 Ethiopian high school girls about what they hope for their own futures, the future of their country, why we need to support each other, and what makes them strong women. The girls were from big towns and small villages. They were as young as 13 and as old as 18. They were Orthodox and Muslim. They responded in English and Amharic. But they all wanted to see change. They all had big hopes and dreams. I’m excited that this is the generation of girls who will get to see the changes many have hoped for, who will create change, and really pull Ethiopia towards bigger things.

Here’s what they had to say:


Gondar Camp GLOW Video

7 Sep

After battles with incompatible video, computer crashes, and awful editing software, I finally scraped together the 2013 Camp GLOW video. Sometimes simple is best. And putting the video together made me smile more over the past few days than anything else. Big thanks go to our partners the University of Gondar and Addis Ababa CCL Girls. And we wouldn’t be anywhere without funding from Peace Corps and PEPFAR. Last Camp GLOW post I promise! (until next year!)


PC Ethiopia Harlem Shake

27 Mar

Because you can dress us up, but you can’t take us out. Jumping on some YouTube bandwagons. I’m G8 Health (you’ll spot me around 1:15 or so I think).


The Drive to Desie and Back: Settling In

2 Jan

Happy New Year!
(and belated Merry Christmas!)

2012 has been crazy! And moving in to my site right at the end of it was the perfect summation of the huge amount of change, adventure and starting over I have done this year. This past week has been a whirlwind of meeting people for work and in my neighborhood, setting up my house, and hosting other traveling volunteers. Because my site is a big cultural and historical city for Ethiopia, many volunteers (and volunteer’s families- wahoo free meals!) come through at some point in their 2 years to check it out. Looks like I will have a much fuller social schedule than the average volunteer (not a problem for me!)

But before I even arrived in Gonder, I got to travel across northern Amhara through the Ethiopian countryside, moving from lowlands to highlands and into the Great Rift Valley to close up shop in my previous site, Dessie. Traveling across Ethiopia is simply breathtaking. Imagine driving through 5 Grand Canyons, past a few Devil’s Towers, into the Rockies while passing some Nebraskan farm fields along the way, but all in the space of New England, or half of Colorado. There is no way to describe it and photos cannot do it justice, but I put together a short video anyway. This is just North Amhara- the Oromia Region (Ethiopia’s breadbasket) Tigray (Sub-Saharan Desert) and Southern Nations (Hammer Tribe and more typically “African” tribes) offer an even wider array of scenery! Enjoy!


A Small Ode to Iteya

17 Dec

As we leave our training sites to swear in as full volunteers, my site mate (and future neighbor up in Aykel, about 2 hours from Gondar) Morgan made a video from our time in training at Iteya. Enjoy!

It ends at 3:50 so don’t watch through all the extra black at the end.

Who were all those people? Those were the 9 trainees who lived in Iteya throughout training, our language and culture trainers, our host families and the cutest little nuggets (Mimilu and Misikir) who showed up at our language class every day and loved to copy our awkward dance moves. The last little bit was an inside joke- don’t worry about it, just know that you lost the game.


Ethiopian Gangnam Style

13 Dec

So Gangnam Style might be old news in the US by now, but it is just starting to sweep across Ethiopia. One of my fellow trainees made this awesome video staring volunteers, host families and locals in Hurruta, Ethiopia’s version of PSY’s k-Pop sensation. Enjoy.