12 of our continuing students are in the University system this year. 9 of them are scheduled to graduate in July 2016 and we wish them every success.
As all our students are from very poor backgrounds, often with illiterate parents, their success is amazing. They all have a thirst for education and will hopefully have a future very different from that of their parents.
It has been agreed that all these students will get a monthly payment of 600 birr with 2 performance related bonuses paying up to 400 birr each.
I met this young boy when he was carrying crates of beer, sacks of flour and sugar etc. for Ben Abeba.
He is from the countryside and both his parents are dead. He is now in Lalibela to continue his education, but has no family to support him. As school is only half a day, he works the other half day to earn money to pay for a rent house and to buy food.
He is now in grade 10 and has great ambitions for his future.
It has been agreed to give him 500 birr per month + 2 performance related bonuses of up to 250 birr each.
What really impressed me about him was his desire to work and earn money rather than beg on the streets, as many youngsters do. The money we give him every month will let him concentrate on his studies.